No jobs bill but Congress has time to honor White Castle

I’m begining to come to the sad realization that our Republican-led US Congress is completely hopeless. They haven’t introduced a single jobs-creation bill but have time for all sorts of frivolities like honoring cheap, crappy fast food.

Rep. Steve Stivers (R-Ohio) on Tuesday honored White Castle with a congressional tribute to the “tasty little burgers” and the company that serves them (which is, of course, based in his home district). “White Castle is truly an American original and is inspiring because it is a story about the successs of the American Dream,” Stivers enthused in the tribute, which he submitted for the congressional record.…
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Michigan Senate Republicans pass “License-to-Bully Bill”, a “Blueprint for bullying”

In one of the sickest and most vile acts of irony yet seen in Michigan under the current Republican regime, Michigan Republicans yesterday passed a bill that lays out specific pathways for legalized bullying in our schools. It is effectively a “Blueprint for Bullying”. The bill passed 26-11 along party lines. It now goes to the House of Representatives.

Legislation that would require Michigan’s public schools to adopt anti-bullying policies has been approved in the Republican-led Senate, but some Democrats say the measure wouldn’t do anything to protect students.

The bill was approved today by a 26-11 vote along party lines.

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President Obama gettin’ all presidential candidate-y and stuff

It’s been a busy week for President Obama. On top of news that his administration (via the FBI) has busted up yet another domestic terrorist plot (sorry, no Muslims this time, Mr. Conservative), we got this:

Obama general counsel Bob Bauer emails lawyers and law students that the campaign is setting up an “unprecedented” new “voter protection” program — a standard feature of Democratic campaigns, but given the general enthusiasm for Obama, and the specific enthusiasm (according to my anecdotal sense) among legal types, probably on a very large scale.

Click through to read Bauer’s email.

Then there’s this:

President Obama ripped into House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) on Wednesday, ridiculing the Republican leader for holding a vote to affirm the national motto — but failing to vote on proposed jobs legislation.…
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Detroit forced to return $9.2 million in unspent federal aid, can’t explain why

For as long as I can remember, Detroit has been a pit of malfeasance, corruption and general ineptitude. When I was a kid, Detroit Public School board members were in the news for taking taxpayer-paid limos to board meetings. Since then it’s been one tale after another of embezzlement, waste, and theft. Closed schools full of computers, science equipment and even student records, left for vandals to abscond with. Employees embezzling tens of thousands of dollars from an already failing school system. Former mayor Kwame Kilpatrick and his administration made Detroit the laughing stock of the nation with his notorious sexting and corruption.…

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SHOCKER! Goldline indicted for fraud!




I travel a fair bit for work and have found that, in the South especially, the only radio stations that come in loud and clear are generally AM talk shows. Which means I dip my toe into the insanity that is Sean Hannity, Mark Levin, and Glenn Beck from time to time. I look at it like scoping out the enemy but I can only take it for so long.

However, it doesn’t take long, particularly during Beck’s hideous show, to hear an ad for Goldline, a gold peddler. Beck himself flogs them ad nauseum. According to their ads, everything in your life will be better if you invest in gold.…

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Saugatuck Dunes gets a temporary reprieve from developer Aubrey McClendon & his Singapore Dunes development company

Saugatuck Township on the shore of Lake Michigan has been battling against developer and natural gas tycoon Aubrey McClendon for several years to prevent the development of sensitive dune land in the community. They were subject to countless lawsuits, essentially draining the Township coffers until, last summer, they finally capitulated and came to an “agreement” with McClendon’s group, Singapore Dunes.

Well, they didn’t win. They capitulated. This is what “compromise” looks like in Michigan right now:
  • Development in 12 of the 32 acres on the site.
  • Up to 100 units to be built on the shoreline property
  • A 66-slip marina
  • A 25-suite inn
  • A nine-hole golf course

Needless to say, those folks who have been fighting tooth and nail to prevent this devastating outcome are none too happy.

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Occupy Niles – VIDEO from last Saturday’s protest in southwest Michigan

Another of Capture Me Films most-excellent videos, this one from the Occupy Niles protest in Niles, Michigan last Saturday. The group Occupy Southwest Michigan is very clearly not a bunch of dissatisfied hippy kids, venting their spleens as is too often portrayed in the media surrounding the Occupy Wall Street movement. This is a group of articulate, angry adults, pissed off that corporations have taken over our government.

One of the things mentioned in this video is the Move to Amend (movetoamend.org) initiative. Here’s what they are asking:

We, the People of the United States of America, reject the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in Citizens United, and move to amend our Constitution to:
  • Firmly establish that money is not speech, and that human beings, not corporations, are persons entitled to constitutional rights.
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Sub-prime AUTO loan securities? Are these people insane? No. Greedily exploiting the poor.

It was the invention and subsequent abuse of sub-prime mortgage securities that crashed our economy. Now these idiots are trading sub-prime auto loan securities.

Private equity firms are investing in chains of used-car lots, and auto loans are being packaged into securities much like subprime mortgages. They’re attracted by the industry’s average profit of 38% for each car sold. [...]

Subprime auto loan issues now represent a larger percentage of all auto-loan securitizations than at any time since 2006, according to Moody’s. [...]

The returns on subprime auto-loan securities vary, but one offering sold late last year paid 3.5% annually on A-rated bonds maturing in three years — about six times the yield on comparable U.S.

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