Archive for January, 2012

30 Jan

White Collar Crime: Treasury Approved Lucrative Exec Payouts for Bailed-Out Firms

New York Daily News columnist and Democracy Now! co-host Juan Gonzalez reports the Treasury Department has approved payouts exceeding $5 million for 49 executives at firms that most benefited from the Wall Street bailout. The executives’ pay came despite the $500,000 salary cap established under the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP). [youtube]www.youtube.com/watch?v=WodYXKbBPp8[/youtube]

Transcript: (more…)

27 Jan

On Your Own: GOP Presidential Candidates Tell Florida Uninsured Women Figure It Out

At last night’s CNN presidential debate in Jacksonville, Florida, the GOP candidates told an unemployed woman in need of health insurance that they would repeal the health reform law that could help her find coverage and give her a tax deduction to go out and find her own insurance.

The woman — Lynn Frazier — said she found herself “unemployed for the first time in 10 years and unable to afford health benefits.” Under the Affordable Care Act, Frazier may qualify for temporary insurance in the state’s high-risk pool, which already provides coverage for 3,285 Floridians who can’t find affordable coverage elsewhere. In two years, she’ll be able to pick out a health policy through the state’s Exchange. All private insurers will offer a comprehensive basic set of benefits and allow consumers like Frazier to compare and contrast different plans to find the coverage that works best for them and their family. Insurers won’t be able to deny insurance based on past illness or rescind coverage unexpectedly, as they often do in today’s health market, and Frazier will pay a “community” rate and may even qualify for tax credits to help her afford her premiums and out of pocket cost-sharing expenses.
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5yz9j74vNw[/youtube]

The Republican candidates pledged to undo these benefits and instead encouraged her to find coverage “as an individual” — on her own — with the help of a government tax deduction: (more…)

26 Jan

Eureka: Low IQ & Conservative Beliefs Linked to Prejudice

There’s no gentle way to put it: People who give in to racism and prejudice may simply be dumb, according to a new study that is bound to stir public controversy.

Far Right Wing, Conservative radio host has a nation of "Ditto Heads" - No wonder why.

The research finds that children with low intelligence are more likely to hold prejudiced attitudes as adults. These findings point to a vicious cycle, according to lead researcher Gordon Hodson, a psychologist at Brock University in Ontario. Low-intelligence adults tend to gravitate toward socially conservative ideologies, the study found. Those ideologies, in turn, stress hierarchy and resistance to change, attitudes that can contribute to prejudice, Hodson wrote in an email to LiveScience.

“Prejudice is extremely complex and multifaceted, making it critical that any factors contributing to bias are uncovered and understood,” he said.

Controversy ahead (more…)

26 Jan

Valueless: Koch Brothers Trying to Buy Higher Education

Charles and David Koch are infringing on intellectual freedom and independence in colleges and universities by controlling entire fields of study and the faculty hiring process. Defend academia and share this video. TAKE ACTION: http://KochBrothersExposed.com/KochCollege [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6f_7uE2rqWw[/youtube]

26 Jan

Top Ten Places You Are Not Allowed To Visit

25 Jan

To Hell With You: NFL Star, Owens, Now “Broke” and Lonely, Still Blames Others

Terrell Owens has always been an island of sorts. His brash personality and self-absorption routinely alienated his teammates during an NFL career that teetered between terrific and toxic, leaving him to fend for himself. Now, at 38 and out of football, he’s lonelier than ever, and running out of money. In a GQ profile, Owens comes across as wounded, broke and desperate. When people text him to ask where he is, he replies back: “I’m in hell.”

But is it his own fault? That’s the perennial debate on T.O., who had a heartbreaking childhood but continually pointed fingers at everyone but himself once he became an adult.

In the GQ story by Nancy Hass, Owens blames the media for not giving him a chance to rehab his injury, blames agent Drew Rosenhaus for not protecting him from a bad business arrangement, and — perhaps most surprisingly — blames a former team captain for his issues with former Philadelphia teammate Donovan McNabb. (more…)

25 Jan

Out of Sight, Out of Her Mind: Benign Comment Shows Blind Spot on Race in America

Charlize Theron and Viola DavisDuring Newsweek’s Oscar roundtable, The Help’s Viola Davis tried to speak about the difficulties of being a black actress in Hollywood—but a well-intentioned reply from Theron was just another example of the problem.

Charlize Theron surely meant no harm. The actress genuinely thought she was complimenting fellow thespian Viola Davis during this year’s Newsweek Oscar roundtable when she told Davis, “You’re hot as shit.’’

Their exchange revolved around Davis’s comments on finding work as an African-American actress. Davis, who has won praise for her starring role in The Help, was attempting to explain the difficult plight of being black and female in the movie industry. “I’m a 46-year-old black woman who really doesn’t look like Halle Berry, and Halle Berry is having a hard time,” said Davis. (more…)

23 Jan

Tell’em Why You Mad Son!: Spike Lee Goes Off At Sundance

Film Mogul, Spike Lee

Spike Lee doesn’t hold back. The Oscar-nominated man behind “Do the Right Thing” and “Malcolm X” went off on Hollywood after Chris Rock asked a question following the Sundance screening for Lee’s new film, “Red Hook Summer.” According to Entertainment Weekly, the film was screened for a large audience, some of whom left after the film took a controversial twist. That didn’t seem to faze Lee. However, when Chris Rock asked Lee about financing the film, the director went off on a bit of a tirade.

Rock, who appeared to be joking around, said, “You spent your own money … What would you have done differently if you’d actually gotten studio money? What else would have happened? Would you have blown up some (bleep)?” Lee, apparently unamused, responded, “We never went to the studios with this film. I bought a camera and said we’re gonna do this mother(bleeping) film ourselves. I didn’t need a mother(bleeping) studio telling me something about Red Hook! They know nothing about black people! Nothing!” Lee then added, “And they’re gonna give me notes about what a 13-year-old black boy and girl do in Red Hook? (Bleep) no!” (more…)

22 Jan

Dedication: Indonesian Schoolchildren Scale Downed Bridge to Get to Class

Poster’s Note: Really this a little crazy and a testament to the shortcomings of the Indonesian state, but the dedication to getting to school is incredible.

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

22 Jan

Much Needed: Kucinich Introduces Constitutional Amendment to Publicly Finance Elections

On the eve of the second anniversary of the Supreme Court ruling known as Citizens United, which opened the floodgate of unlimited, shadowy corporate spending in public elections, Congressman Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) has introduced H. J. Res. 100, a constitutional amendment to rescue American democracy from corporate money’s corrupting influence. “Because of the decision by the Supreme Court majority in the Citizens United case, more money was spent on campaigns in the 2010 election than has ever been spent in a mid-term election. “Because of the Citizens United case, more money will be spent in the 2012 elections than has ever been spent in an election in the history of our country. “Because of the Citizens United case, American democracy has been put up on the auction block,” said Kucinich.

Citizens need to unite behind this Amendment

(more…)

22 Jan

Blow the Whistle: Ex-Oil Worker Exposes the Dangers of Hydro-Fracking

Maxime Daigle worked on oil and gas rigs for seven years before quitting to devote his life to protesting what he believes are the perils of shale gas drilling. Daigle spent his career in the oil and gas sector working in operations located in Alberta, British Columbia and across the United States.

He started as a roughneck and worked his way up to drilling foreman.

But he soon concluded the world’s dependency on oil was killing the planet and he left the industry.
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5uEByZiD6Cg[/youtube] (more…)

22 Jan

Immigrants For SALE!: Detention Center Nearly Bankrupts Town

With the promise of increased “product” (aka detained immigrants) and alleged prosperity for a town that was struggling with an economic crisis Littlefield embarked in the so-called “lucrative” business of detention centers. Instead, what Littlefield got was a mega-complex private facility, an additional $10 million contractual debt, and a fleeing population. At an average rate of $200 per night/per inmate, private prison operators profit over $5 billion a year. How do they do it? Like con-artists, they lure town councils and local government officials with promises of easy money and increased revenue. However, what they don’t tell them is at what cost!
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w3G9YWqpWDU[/youtube] (more…)

20 Jan

“She Wasn’t Shooting in the GYM!”: Bryant Reported to Lose $75 Mil & 3 Mansions in Divorce

Kobe Bryant reportedly loses all three of his mansions, $75 million, in divorce settlement

L.A. Laker Superstar, Kobe Bryant

Did you know that Kobe Bryant owns three mansions in Newport Beach, alone? No? Let that swirl around for a second, and now learn that Kobe Bryant does not own three mansions in Newport Beach anymore. Those houses, and a princely $75 million sum, have been sent to Kobe’s ex-wife Vanessa in the couple’s divorce settlement.

TMZ is reporting that the $75 million figure represents half of Kobe’s … er, “the couple’s” total assets. The quick split and even quicker payoff (all three of his houses?) would appear to lend credibility to the idea that Kobe wanted absolutely nothing to do with his ex-wife potentially going on record to air whatever dirty laundry that emanated from what was at times a contentious and fitful 10-year marriage — including reports of massive amounts of infidelity. One of the three mansions is even still in the construction stage, but she’s getting that one too. According to Wikipedia, and this massive lump sum of cash and real estate, the former couple did not put together a prenuptial agreement before tying the knot in April of 2001. The Bryants have two daughters, and we wish both parties well as they move on in their personal lives.

20 Jan

Modern American Education: Coming to a Classroom Near You

The CPS Grind on Teachers By Katie Osgood

Recently, in Chicagoland, a story hit the papers about a teacher committing suicide. She wrote in her suicide note that the major reason for this drastic act was work-related. According to her colleagues, this woman took her own life because of the bullying and fear she experienced at her school.

Chicago Mayor, Rahm Emmanuel

As I discussed this event with a friend who is a current CPS teacher, he mentioned that in the comments section of the article many non-educators were shocked and horrified at this tragic happening but were also quick to assume that the woman must have been “soft” or had some kind of underlying mental health problem. But, he quipped, when many CPS teachers heard about the incident, they just shook their heads and said, “Yeah, I can see that happening.”

Truth is, so could I. When I think back to my measly one year of teaching at a horribly-run CPS elementary school, I can very easily imagine that scenario unfolding with a number of my colleagues and yes, even with myself. Did you all catch that? Suicide is not considered shocking in the realm of teaching in CPS.

And I don’t think the general public understands the toll that years of working in an increasingly horrible environment coupled with the latest wave of teacher-bashing actually takes on the people who do the hard work of education.

Let me try and paint you a picture: (more…)

19 Jan

Today’s Radio: Arie Spears New Single “#$%^&* A Book, Look At My Dance!”

Not Serious, definitely a little vulgar and obscene, funny as hell. The reason we “Hate”!
Unfortunately sounds like today’s radio.
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w6RoeJu1nqM[/youtube]

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