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|1652||The Dutch establish a settlement at Cape Town, South Africa.|
|1712||A slave revolt breaks out in New York City.|
|1798||The territory of Mississippi is organized.|
|1862||General Ulysses S. Grant defeats Confederates at Battle of Shiloh, Tenn.|
|1914||The British House of Commons passes the Irish Home Rule Bill.|
|1922||U.S. Secretary of Interior leases the Teapot Dome naval oil reserves in Wyoming.|
|1933||President Franklin Roosevelt signs legislation ending Prohibition in the United States.|
|1943||British and American armies link up between Wadi Akarit and El Guettar in North Africa, forming a solid line against the German army.|
|1945||The Japanese battleship Yamato, the world's largest battleship, is sunk during the battle for Okinawa.|
|1963||Yugoslavia proclaims itself a Socialist republic.|
|1971||President Nixon pledges a withdrawal of 100,000 more men from Vietnam by December.|
|1980||The United States breaks relations with Iran.|
|1983||Specialist Story Musgrave and Don Peterson make first Space Shuttle spacewalk.|
|1990||John Poindexter is found guilty in the Iran-Contra scandal.|
SECTION 1. The North Carolina General Assembly asserts that the Constitution of the United States of America does not prohibit states or their subsidiaries from making laws respecting an establishment of religion. SECTION 2. The North Carolina General Assembly does not recognize federal court rulings which prohibit and otherwise regulate the State of North Carolina, its public schools, or any political subdivisions of the State from making laws respecting an establishment of religion.The North Carolina bill seeks to play the First Amendment both ways. It says that the state is exempted from the establishment clause under the First Amendment, which establishes the "separation of church and state." The clause reads that "Congress shall make no law respecting an Establishment of Religion." But the North Carolina bill asserts that prohibition does not apply "to states, municipalities, or schools," and that North Carolina could establish a state religion. The bill then goes further, portraying this reasoning as a protection of the freedom of religion, including the state lawmakers' right to exercise their own religious beliefs.
“Some of the richest people in the world are buying property here as an investment,” [Paul Dimoldenberg, leader of the Labour opposition in Westminster Council] said. “They may live here for a fortnight in the summer, but for the rest of the year they’re contributing nothing to the local economy. The specter of new buildings where there are no lights on is a real problem...”
Meanwhile, prices are rising beyond expectation. For single-family housing in the prime areas of London, British buyers spend an average of $2.25 million, Ms. Barnes said, while foreign buyers spend an average of $3.75 million, which increases to $7.5 million if they are from Russia or the Middle East...
The most visible, and also the most notorious, of the new developments is One Hyde Park, a $1.7 billion apartment building of stratospheric opulence on a prime corner in Knightsbridge, near Harvey Nichols, the park and the Mandarin Oriental Hotel, which functions as a 24-hour concierge service for residents. Apartments there have been purchased mostly by foreign buyers who hide their identities behind murky offshore companies registered to tax havens like the Isle of Man and the Cayman Islands.
It is rare to see anyone coming to or going from the complex, and British newspapers have been trying since it opened two years ago to discover who lives there. Vanity Fair reported recently that as far as it could discern after a long trawl through records, the owners seem to include a cast of characters who might have come from a poker game in a James Bond movie: a Russian property magnate, a Nigerian telecommunications tycoon, the richest man in Ukraine, a Kazakh copper billionaire, someone who may or may not be a Kazkh singer and the head of finance for the emirate of Sharjah.
"The political intelligence industry is flourishing, enriching itself and clients in the stock market, yet the report notes that it could not document who these people are or how much they profit," [Craig Holman, government affairs lobbyist for government watchdog Public Citizen] said. "Without full transparency of the activity of these political intelligence consultants and their clients, it is nearly impossible to know if they are trading on illegal insider information."
We’re in this place, in this chamber of the House of Representatives, to represent the American people. We recognize that a thriving middle class is the backbone of our democracy and that we are here to meet the needs of the American people and strengthen that democracy. With the legislation that is before us today, we undermine, we undermine all of those efforts. So, with the sequestration, which is reaffirmed in this legislation, it would go down a path that is harmful to our economy, and harmful to our national security. Don’t take it from me, the Federal Reserve Chairman, Ben Bernanke, told Congress last week on more than one occasion that the cuts of this size, made this quickly, would hurt hiring and incomes, slow the recovery, cost the economy 750,000 jobs and keep deficits larger than otherwise.Here is what the President said back in February:
“The impact of this policy won’t be felt overnight, but it will be real,” Mr. Obama said at the Newport News Shipbuilding company in Newport News, Va. “The sequester will weaken America’s economic recovery, it will weaken our military readiness, and it will weaken the services people depend on.”In fact, most of America anticipated that the sequester effect on the economy and, with it, job creation would be harmful.
“The president’s policies continue to make it harder for Americans to find work,” he said in a statement. “To help grow our economy and expand opportunity for all Americans, Republicans passed a balanced budget that addresses our spending problem, unleashes North American energy like Keystone, and fixes our broken tax code, and voted to replace the president’s sequester with smarter cuts and reforms.”My mother used to have a saying about people like John Boehner. He’s trying to sit on two chairs with one behind. On one hand, he’s arguing that the savage cuts that came with sequester are hurting job growth and despite having sold sequester in 2011. On the other hand, he’s arguing we need more of same savage cuts and tax cuts for the rich that hurt job creation to create more jobs. Gee, why didn’t we think of that before? Oh wait, we did and it didn’t work over the 30 years we did try it. It begs the question, why would it work now.
That deficit has declined from 5.6 percent of potential GDP in 2011 to 2.5 percent in 2013 — that’s 3 percent of GDP, which is a lot of austerity. Not all of that cut has even hit yet — the sequester isn’t in the macro numbers yet — but the rise in the payroll tax is very clearly driving the latest bad numbers, which show big declines in retail.Indeed, the report shows that retail jobs are down, which stands to reason. More people are working for lower wages be it as a result of being underemployed or as a result of furloughs because of the sequester. When there is less money to spend, there is less demand for retail goods. When there is less demand it means jobs are cut, or at the very least, they are not created.
This is really stupid; as long as we’re at the zero lower bound, austerity is a huge mistake. Yet for what, the third time since 2009, all discussion in Washington has turned away from job creation to deficits (even though the debt problem has largely faded away) and the need for an early Fed exit from stimulus (even though unemployment remains high and inflation low).While economists have a more refined understanding of the intricacies involved, one need only do some reading about the effects of austerity on Europe’s economy to realize that savage cuts to government spending when the economy is weak retard economic growth, kill jobs and grow poverty. It’s only a matter of common sense to realize that even more savage cuts to government in America will produce exactly the same results – on steroids.
“While changes in our healthcare delivery system may provide more healthcare opportunities for low income Kentuckians, these results show how vital a strong economy, and jobs that pay well, are to our population’s health.”Before the repugican cabal’s policies gave us the great recesson, Steven Wolf conducted a similar study in Virginia. In 2006, he warned:
“More than half remained uninsured specifically because they simply couldn’t afford it, the CDC said. Research consistently highlights the negative link between reduced income and worsening health — as salaries drop, individuals tend to be more stressed, and generally lead less-healthy lifestyles.Simply put, there is a nexus between poverty and chronic health issues. There is also a nexus between jobs that provide a living wage and having a healthy way of living. I refuse to call it a healthy lifestyle, because that infers that people in poverty actually have the luxury of choosing expensive nutritious foods over affordable less nutritious ones. It suggests that there is enough flexibility in the resources of someone who lives in poverty to not only get nutritious foods but enough of them. People who are starving are less likely to exercise. Contrary to the repugican cabal’s rhetoric, living in poverty means constant stress be it worrying about feeding the kids or if you’ll have a roof over your head next week.
These people are going to develop diseases at a higher rate and the health care system is going to feel the brunt of it,”
One study from actuarial firm Milliman found that “chemotherapy delivered in a hospital setting costs the federal government an average of $6,500 more annually than care delivered in a community clinic.”Even if the twisted logic of making things more expensive actually cuts spending, there is the added problem that since most Medicare patients receive their treatments at oncology clinics instead of hospitals, it’s doubtful that hospitals will have the ability to take these patients on.
FACT: Medical Evidence From Qualified Professionals Is Required To Determine EligibilityThe Media Matters report cites high-quality sources like the GAO throughout, and makes an excellent case for a general retraction of this report by NPR. I hope that they, and Glass, will reconsider their endorsement of this report.
Government Accountability Office: "Examiners Rely On A Combination Of Key Medical And Nonmedical Information Sources." A Government Accountability Office report found that disability determination services (DDS) examiners determined a child's medical eligibility for benefits based on a combination of school records and medical records, and that if medical records in particular were not available, they were able to order consultative exams to review medical evidence:
DDS examiners rely on a combination of key medical and nonmedical information sources -- such as medical records, effects of prescribed medications, school records, and teacher and parent assessments -- in determining a child's medical eligibility for benefits. Several DDS officials we interviewed said that when making a determination, they consider the totality of information related to the child's impairments, rather than one piece of information in isolation. Based on our case file review, we estimate that examiners generally cited four to five information sources as support for their decisions in fiscal year 2010 for the three most prevalent mental impairments.
If such evidence is not available or is inconclusive, DDS examiners may purchase a consultative exam to provide additional medical evidence and help them establish the severity of a child's impairment. [Government Accountability Office, 6/26/12]
Even in 2008, the last year I worked for an insurance company, my colleagues in the sales division were encouraging employers to go “total replacement,” which means eliminating all choices except high-deductible plans. Insurers have long used proprietary “studies” supposedly proving that making people pay more out of pocket for medical care will “incentivize” them to lead healthier lives.It is about increasing profits by shifting more of the costs for previously insured healthcare to the consumer. In other words, you pay for healthcare insurance, plus you pay the costs for your healthcare yourself. There are corporatists who will tell you that the more you pay out of pocket, the more likely you are to live a healthier life style. Of course, you’re not supposed to notice that earning enough to feed your family, have shelter etc. would also contribute to living a healthier life style. However, I digress. This is more of the same mindset that sees healthcare generally and health insurance especially as just another business.
The “Chained CPI” is touted as taking into account that seniors cut back when prices rise.”They are actually saying,” Johnson wrote, “that because people have to cut back to cat food, then they should only be getting enough to pay for cat food. The elites love the ‘Chained CPI’ because it helps keep the government from raising taxes on the rich to pay back what was borrowed from Social Security and used to give tax cuts to the rich.The chained CPI will hit every senior hard, but especially women. According to the National Women’s Law Center, the chained CPI means if you’re 70 you’ll go hungry 1 day a month, but if you commit the crime of living until you’re 95 you’ll be rewarded with hunger 13 days out of every month.
Even Social Security’s current inflation adjustment understates the true impact of inflation on the elderly. That’s because they spend 20 to 40 percent of their incomes on health care, and health-care costs have been rising faster than inflation. So why adopt a new inflation adjustment that’s even stingier than the current one?If the best healthcare system in the world doesn’t get you, the chained CPI eventually will. You’ll be glad to know, however, that your sacrifice means the corporate elite will be able to build more sweatshops.
Taking care of a fine is straightforward for some Ohioans — having been convicted of a criminal or traffic offense and sentenced to pay a fine, an affluent defendant may simply pay it and go on with his or her life. For Ohio’s poor and working poor, by contrast, an unaffordable fine is just the beginning of a protracted process that may involve contempt charges, mounting fees, arrest warrants, and even jail time. The stark reality is that, in 2013, Ohioans are being repeatedly jailed simply for being too poor to pay fines.The report documents heartbreaking cases, like Samantha Reed and John Bundren, a couple with a nine-month-old who were both ordered to pay fines they can't afford. John diverts whatever seasonal/part time wages he earns to Samantha's fines so she can look after their baby, while he goes to jail for ten-day stretches for failure to make payments. They are effectively indigent, but are not given access to counsel when they appear in court over their debts.
The U.S. Constitution, the Ohio Constitution, and Ohio Revised Code all prohibit debtors’ prisons. The law requires that, before jailing anyone for unpaid fines, courts must determine whether an individual is too poor to pay. Jailing a person who is unable to pay violates the law, and yet municipal courts and mayors’ courts across the state continue this draconian practice. Moreover, debtors’ prisons actually waste taxpayer dollars by arresting and incarcerating people who will simply never be able to pay their fines, which are in any event usually smaller than the amount it costs to arrest and jail them.
The women of Ocumicho built molds of various base shapes, which were then differentiated with smaller clay embellishments, like spouts or handles, and finished with colorful glazes. By the 1950s, Ocumicho craftswomen mostly produced bird-shaped whistles and figurine banks, which they would sell at the local markets.Vicente's story did not end happily, but his assistants and fans continued making the diablitos. They became his legacy, and the signature artworks of the village of Ocumicho. Read the whole story and see more diablitos at Collector's Weekly.
“But there was this one pivotal character named Marcelino Vicente,” says Orr. “Marcelino was the last of 11 or 12 children, all boys,” she continues, “and many townspeople claim that his mother wanted a baby girl, so she dressed him in girl’s clothing. Growing up, he was also really interested in what was considered ‘women’s work,’ which was making pottery, and was totally mocked by the men for doing this. He was a little bit of a renegade.”
Ocumicho was an extremely poor and isolated village, so it was highly unusual for individuals to step out of the prescribed gender roles. Claudia B. Isaac, who analyzed the gender division in Ocumicho in 1996, wrote that, “Although no one I spoke with directly verified that Marcelino was gay, many talked disparagingly of his reluctance to fulfill traditional male roles.”
Despite their prejudices, the town’s female potters recognized Vicente’s gift for working with clay, and he progressed from small whistles and banks to larger sculptural pieces featuring the devil characters he grew so fond of. These diablitos were an unlikely icon in such a conservative religious community; most locals associate the devil with bad luck, and are reluctant to bring diablitos into their homes. Yet when Vicente finally took his wares to the tianguis, and spread them out on a blanket for sale, the wacky diablitos were a hit.
In the most outrageous scene in the story, a field crew quickly brushes sand off a Deinonychus skeleton as if the dinosaur were a dusty curio.Recovering dinosaur bones from the earth is a exacting, painstaking (yet rewarding) process. Brian Switek tells us what it's really like at Slate.
I wish that digging dinosaurs were as easy as Jurassic Park made it look. I really do. The “raptor” fossil—called Velociraptor in the film, but really a Deinonychus to paleo pedants such as myself—that Grant and Sattler’s team exposes is buried under the thinnest coating of sand. And the complete, articulated skeleton is so sturdy that one of the field assistants can stick his grubby hands right into the dinosaur’s nasal cavity and flick out the sand. Watch the scene carefully. It’s the only time I know of that someone picking a dinosaur’s nose has ever been shown in a feature film.
The reason, say experts at Tokyo Sea Life Park, is that the Ocellated Ice Fish has no hemoglobin, making it unique among vertebrates the world over.
Hemoglobin is the protein found in every other animal with bones. It is what makes blood red and is the agent that carries oxygen around the body. [...]
Researchers believe the fish can live without hemoglobin because it has a large heart and uses blood plasma to circulate oxygen throughout its body.
For the experiment, the team surgically grafted “eye primordia” from donor tadpole embryos onto host embryos, 95 percent of which grew eyes on their tails.NatGeo's Weird & Wild Blog has the story: Here.
The team then used red and blue LEDs to condition the tadpoles to associate red light with a mild electric shock.
Consequently, both tadpoles with normal eyes and those with ectopic eyes developed an aversion to red light and learned to avoid red-lit areas—meaning that the tadpoles with tail “eyes” could see. In contrast, a control group of eyeless tadpoles did not learn to avoid red light.
The spine is known to transmit all kinds of sensory information throughout the body, but the 64,000-eyeball question is how the brain recognizes the signals from the far-flung ectopic eyes for what they are. [...]
“What is really interesting is how the brain knows it is visual data,” said Levin