Thus the deathless words of Rep. Eric Cantor, from a memo to his troops as reported by the NYT:
>>”Over the next several months, there will be tremendous pressure on Congress to prove that S.& P.’s analysis of the inability of the political parties to bridge our differences is wrong. In short, there will be pressure to compromise on tax increases,” Mr. Cantor wrote. But, he added, “We were not elected to raise taxes or take more money out of the pockets of hardworking families and business people.”<<
Translated: S&P downgraded U.S. debt because they concluded U.S. government was dysfunctional. There will be pressure to prove them wrong. Let’s prove them right!
Oh, Monsanto, you sly dog.
You keep trying to make us believe you are “committed to sustainable agriculture” with your canny advertisments on American Public Media, even as you force-feed farmers your lab-grown Frankenseeds that expire every year (which are, let’s be honest, opposite of sustainable).
But we shouldn’t be surprised by the mixed message, should we? After all, you’ve been doing this for decades. With long-running corporate sponsorships, like Disney’s Tomorrowland, building reserves of goodwill as you spray us with DDT, it’s clear you’re entitled to send out products into the world with nary an environmental or health concern—just as long as you spend a bit of that hard-earned cash convincing us otherwise.
On that note, let’s take a quick look at some of the biotech giant’s most dubious contributions to society over their past century in business.
The UK government’s National Archives today released 34 UFO files of 9,000 pages from the Ministry of Defence (MoD) containing top secret memos in which UFOs were discussed, along with sightings and incidents reported by members of the public, during the period 1985-2007.
Documents on popular UFO sighting of 1956 at RAF (Royal Air Force) Lakenheath in Suffolk, reported by RAF fighter controller Freddie Wimbledon and MoD official Ralph Noyes, include a testimony in which Wimbledon says the RAF fighter planes tried intercepting a UFO seen on radar and by observers on the ground. But the UFO “latched onto” a fighter plane, ”following its every move” before speeding off at ”terrific speed”. Noyes testified that he had seen a gun camera footage of the UFOs taken from aboard the aircraft at a special MoD screening in 1970.
Indeed, a series of charts in "A Return to Responsibility," a report by the Center for American Progress, shows that it is Republican presidents, not Democrats, who have mandated significant cuts in defense spending. Eisenhower cut 27 percent overall, Nixon 29 percent, and President Bush H.W. Bush, who served only one term, 17 percent. Even Ronald Reagan, who lavished money on the Pentagon with the express purpose of bankrupting the Soviets, cut the budget by 10 percent during his second term. The great exception to the rule is George W. Bush, who increased spending by an astonishing 70 percent during his tenure. If we include the cost of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the United States now spends $700 billion a year on defense, a figure that, translated into constant dollars, was last reached in World War II.
Former U.S. Deputy Defense Secretary John Hamre and retired Gen. Gordon Sullivan have described four pillars of post-conflict reconstruction: security, governance and participation, urgent social and economic needs, and justice and reconciliation. Of these pillars, the magical world can currently afford to feel complacent about only one — social and economic needs. After all, with the proper application of scouring, mending, and engorgement charms, much of the physical damage wrought by the war can be repaired, and food can be multiplied to meet the needs of the population. But with respect to the other imperatives, critical challenges remain.
Surviving Death Eaters will have to be brought to justice or reintegrated into magical society. Long-standing rifts among magical communities that the war widened must be healed. Most of all, we must ensure that the values that triumphed in the final battle — tolerance, pluralism, and respect for the dignity of all magical and non-magical creatures alike — are reflected in the institutions and arrangements that emerge from the conflict. What ultimately matters is not just whether something evil was defeated, but whether something good is built in its place.
As experts on human rights, civilian protection, and national security, we were recently asked by officials in the British Ministry of Magic to suggest lessons from the Muggle world that might apply to challenges facing post-Voldemort magical society. Our recommendations are summarized below.
Parliament is at risk of fines or possibly even having its internet disconnected due to the Government’s new file-sharing law which comes into force tomorrow, the Green Party said today.
"There doesn’t seem to be a plan for Parliament to deal with the new copyright law," Green Party ICT spokesperson Gareth Hughes said.
"This law could bring the gears of government to a grinding halt because the holder of the account — Parliamentary Services — provides internet access to hundreds of users anyone of whom could cause infringement notices to be sent."
“Like Parliament, schools, libraries and universities run the risk of fines or disconnection. Unitec in Auckland has even said they might cease providing internet services for students due to possible copyright liability,” said Mr Hughes.
Scrambling to fend off a sovereign debt crisis, the Italian government on Friday approved $65 billion in additional emergency austerity measures over the next two years, including tax increases and cuts to local government in an effort to balance the budget by 2013.
The government was responding to demands by the European Central Bank, which last week began buying Italian bonds, driving down Italy’s borrowing costs. But it did so on the condition that Italy make significant changes, including liberalizing its labor market and closed professions, privatizing state industry and adjusting its pension system.
After an emergency cabinet meeting on Friday, Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi announced the new measures, which include raising the capital gains tax to 20 percent from 12.5 percent, except for government bonds; eliminating several nonreligious national holidays; and cracking down on businesses that do not give receipts.
The new measures also include a “solidarity tax” on high earners: an additional 5 percent tax on incomes above $128,000 a year and 10 percent on incomes above $213,000 a year for the next two years.
If you had told me 10 years ago that the USA could take some austerity advice from Italy, I’d laughed…
Emails shared with the Indianapolis Star suggest that Indiana state Rep. Phillip Hinkle (R) — responding to a local posting on Craigslist — offered a young man $80 plus tip to spend time with him Saturday night at a local hotel.
According to the Evansville Courier & Press, Hinkle voted earlier this year for a constitutional gay marriage ban and his official bio says he’s married with two children.
Yesterday a partially-redacted document briefly appeared on the FCC website –accidentally posted by a law firm working for AT&T on the $39 billion T-Mobile deal (somewhere there’s a paralegal looking for work today). While AT&T engaged in damage control telling reporters that the document contained no new information — our review of the doc shows that’s simply not true. Data in the letter undermines AT&T’s primary justification for the massive deal, while highlighting how AT&T is willing to pay a huge premium simply to reduce competition and keep T-Mobile out of Sprint’s hands.