The Roundup for June 3, 2011
A lot to digest this Friday. My homework assignment is to think things over.
Incidentally, the next couple weeks will have some posting disruptions from me as I engage in some summer travel. So let’s get a start on moving toward a more inclusive site (who wants to intern?) by making this a your-turn roundup. I’ll put my normal links up top, but I encourage you to add anything you think I might have missed in the comments.
• Diane Ravitch writes an op-ed based on legitimate research and analysis about school reform, and Jonathan Alter called her a biased liar because… well, because Arne Duncan told him to call her a biased liar.
• About those “150 economists” John Boehner rounded up supporting his conservative economic proposals: a lot of them are Republican politicians, tea party partisans and supporters of the Bush tax cuts. Not many media outlets noticed this.
• See my earlier story about Mitt Romney having little chance in a Republican primary – he just agreed that the world is getting warmer and that human actions have something to do with it.
• Erskine Bowles and Alan Simpson are pining for the Gang of Six, which has alredy broken up. But maybe if they can get David Walker, the would-be Senator from Pete Peterson’s think tank network, into the Senate from Connecticut, they can reconstitute it. As Matt Stoller tweeted to me, Walker’s slogan could be “Bring back debtor’s prisons!”
• The interminable lobbying on swipe fees could come to a head with a vote next week. Not sure how it’ll turn out, but you can’t go wrong always betting with the banks.
• The US Treasury will sell its remaining shares in Chrysler to Fiat for $500 million.
• Civil liberties groups are suing to block Georgia’s anti-immigration law.
• Asset management specialist Mark Mobius says the next financial crisis is coming, because the same banksters are engaging in the same risky practices. If you read the incredible story of Goldman Sachs offering an equity stake to Moammar Gadhafi a few years ago, you’ll agree.
• You get the feeling that the Administration just doesn’t want the hassle of more nominations. So they’re just letting them go vacant. It’s really sad.
• Tim Geithner and his European colleagues are having a slap fight about regulations. Neither side comes out looking very good, and the real losers are those who would be protected by financial reform regulations. Because the industry is well in command.
• Haley Barbour goes off the reservation on Eric Cantor’s idea to offset natural disaster spending.
• In the space of a couple days, Florida Governor Rick Scott moved Medicaid patients into for-profit managed care, banned abortion coverage from the exchanges, cut funding for at-risk children, and required all welfare recipients to take drug tests, which will enrich one company that administers the tests, a company Scott used to run. Wow.
• Also pleading not guilty: Ratko Mladic at The Hague. Actually he refused to enter a plea at all.
• State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman is enforcing the law on multiple levels in New York. After warning the town of Jackson that their “English-only” law violated state and federal statutes, the town council repealed it.
• A poll in New York State finds widespread support for marriage equality. The vote for legalizing same-sex marriage should come up within weeks, and in the State Senate it will be very close.
• CAFE standards that could rise to as much as 62 mpg by 2025 will get a major fight from the car companies.
• The US and Pakistan will engage in joint intelligence operations. So much for that bad blood.
• Johann Hari wants to put the IMF on trial, not just DSK. If anything, DSK would be acquitted on those charges; relatively speaking he was pretty decent at the IMF.
• Keep an eye out on this major school funding legislation in California. It would return some power to the legislature.
• Arizona’s Senators are dropping the ball on judicial nominations.
• George Allen is very, very sorry about Macaca.
• Koch is amazing!
• The less said about Sarah Palin’s explanation of Paul Revere’s midnight ride, the better.