Former schoolteacher Deborah Parish (we’re unsure on the spelling, since we got her name from the video), wanted to impress upon the agency that you can teach kids to get sexy without taking their clothes off, a proposition for which the fact that she had gone all her 56 years without “technically” having sex somehow serves as evidence. But before she could testify about all her gratifying fully clothed sexual experiences, the agency’s members informed her that they were taking testimony on alcohol awareness—the sex ed stuff, when her virginal status would have been relevant, had all happened the day before. Read the agenda, virgin!
Exactly as one would expect, the prime beneficiaries of all of that pillaging continue to grow. The banks that almost brought the world economy to collapse but then received massive public largesse because they were “too big to fail” are now bigger than ever; as The Washington Post delicately put it: ”The crisis may be turning out very well for many of the behemoths that dominate U.S. finance.” Everything involving the government turns out well for these “behemoths” because they own and control the U.S. Government.
As previously documented, Goldman Sachs itself has a virtual lock on the top Treasury positions no matter which party is in power. The vaunted bipartisan “Baucus plan” was literally written by a Baucus aide who just left her position as Vice President of Wellpoint to write the health care reform plan for the Senate — a revelation which barely caused a ripple. And the Supreme Court is on the verge of striking down the few limits on corporate involvement in our politics, a ruling which may (or may not be) constitutionally defensible but which will flood American politics with so much corporate money that it will give new meaning to the term “oligarchy.”
So with this massive pillaging of America’s economic security and the control of American government by its richest and most powerful factions growing by the day, to whom is America’s intense economic anxiety being directed? To a non-profit group that devotes itself to providing minute benefits to people who live under America’s poverty line, and which is so powerless in Washington that virtually the entire U.S. Senate just voted to cut off its funding at the first sign of real controversy — could anyone imagine that happening to a key player in the banking or defense industry?
The FHA has effectively replaced sub-prime lenders who went bust. They’re under pressure to prop-up housing prices, and are insuring heaps of risky loans in an effort to do so. Their guidelines are slipping and loan-volumes are skyrocketing. Delinquencies are skyrocketing too, reaching 14.4% in the 2nd quarter of 2009, according to the NYT (borrowers at least one payment late).
Even more shocking is this number: In 2009 FHA has insured 23% of all new mortgages. That’s up from 2% in 2006 (source: LAT). That spells big trouble down the road.
This Ditech.com screenshot (taken 9/18/09) advertises loose FHA Loan policies. They highlight “easier qualifying guidelines on FHA loans” and “flexibile credit and income guidelines“.
It looks straight out of a Countrywide commercial circa 2003, but I assure you I took it yesterday. Hard to believe we’re using these tactics again already. Can we at least get a little break between bubbles? “Easier Qualifying Guidelines”? Seriously?
Referring to an incident in which a white student was beaten by black students on a bus, Limbaugh said: “I think the guy’s wrong. I think not only it was racism, it was justifiable racism. I mean, that’s the lesson we’re being taught here today. Kid shouldn’t have been on the bus anyway. We need segregated buses — it was invading space and stuff. This is Obama’s America.”
“Police initially said the beating of the white student by two black students appeared to be racially motivated,” the Associated Press wrote. “But police on Tuesday backed away from that.”
That didn’t stop Limbaugh from making his comments Wednesday.
“In Obama’s America, the white kids now get beat up with the black kids cheering, ‘Yay, right on, right on, right on, right on,” Limbaugh also said. “I wonder if Obama’s going to come to come to the defense of the assailants the way he did his friend Skip Gates up there at Harvard.”
STUDENTS can have Windows 7 irritate the shit out of them for a reduced fee of £30, Microsoft has announced.
The offer is a massive reduction on the standard £80 price tag, but with the same range of state-of-the-art features specifically designed to send you hurtling towards the very brink of violent insanity.
A Microsoft spokesman said: “This is a great opportunity for young people to claw at their skulls and scream ‘no, no, no, I do not want to load any more fucking updates, you utterly horrifying box full of evil’ while trying to arrange cups of coffees and study sessions with their new college pals.”
Americans are being forced to pay significantly higher swipe fees whenever they use their credit cards than any of their peers in the industrialized world, according to a report by the Merchants Payments Coalition.
The report, released Thursday by a coalition of retailers, supermarkets, drugstores and other businesses, found that Americans currently pay about $2 in “interchange” fees for every $100 they spend using credit cards. The fee is actually paid by retailers, though consumers feel it in a higher retail price. This rate is twice that charged in the U.K. and New Zealand, four times the rate levied in Australia and more than six times the cross-border rate charged in the European Union, the study says.
“If we paid the same low credit- and debit-card swipe fees as consumers in Australia pay, then the net benefit for American consumers would have totaled $125 billion over the last four years,” the report says.
An Arizona couple accused of sexual abuse after taking bath-time photos of their children and then trying to have them developed at Walmart are suing the state and the retail giant.
Lisa and Anthony “A.J.” Demaree’s three young daughters were taken away by Arizona Child Protective Services last fall when a Walmart employee found partially nude pictures of the girls on a camera memory stick taken to the store for processing, according to the suit.
The Peoria couple’s attorney said Walmart turned the photos over to police and the Demarees were not allowed to see their children for several days and didn’t regain custody for a month while the state investigated.
Neither parent was charged with sexual abuse and they regained custody of their children — then ages 1 1/2, 4 and 5 — but the Demarees claim the incident inflicted lasting harm.
The couple is seeking undetermined monetary damages from both Walmart and the state and have requested a jury trial.
Tesco has been accused of religious discrimination after the company ordered the founder of a Jedi religion to remove his hood or leave a branch of the supermarket in north Wales.
Daniel Jones, founder of the religion inspired by the Star Wars films, says he was humiliated and victimised for his beliefs following the incident at a Tesco store in Bangor.
The 23-year-old, who founded the International Church of Jediism, which has 500,000 followers worldwide, was told the hood flouted store rules.
But the grocery empire struck back, claiming that the three best known Jedi Knights in the Star Wars movies – Yoda, Obi-Wan Kenobi and Luke Skywalker – all appeared in public without their hoods. Jones, from Holyhead, who is known by the Jedi name Morda Hehol, said his religion dictated that he should wear the hood in public places and is considering legal action against the chain.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety conducted a unique crash test to demonstrate the advances in motor vehicle safety over the last 50 years. In this test, a 2009 Chevrolet Malibu and a 1959 Chevrolet Bel Air are both going 40 mph and the vehicles collide offset, driver side to driver side. This is the same crash configuration represented by the Institute’s 40 mph frontal offset barrier test, which is used to rate the frontal crash performance of new cars.