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The Roundup for April 10, 2012

The beat goes on…

• Great piece from Lambert Strether on how the banks have made code into law.

• The twists in the Trayvon Martin case today are profoundly bizarre. George Zimmerman set up a Geocities page for his legal defense. A family member accuses Eric Holder of racism. Then Zimmerman’s lawyers hold a press conference to say they’re parting ways with their client, and that they haven’t heard from him since Sunday. It turns out that Zimmerman contacted the special prosecutor who is determining whether to charge him.

• Meanwhile, the Martin case has still not provoked any rethinking of gun control laws, despite the fact that, in Florida, armed citizens have more relaxed rules of engagement than our soldiers at war. I don’t know what it will take.

• JPMorgan Chase just blocked new student loans to non-customers of the bank. I could see this becoming a trend. Students should be advised to steer completely clear of private student loans.

• This Yahoo interview with Shaun Donovan on the foreclosure fraud settlement looks like an infomercial, in both production value and content. You can get a lot more real talk from Abigail Field.

• Appalling interview with Harold Koh, who has done a 180 on all of his civil liberties beliefs, while claiming he hasn’t.

• The best way to counter ALEC, because you won’t be able to fully defund it, is to mimic it with a stronger network for model progressive legislation in the states.

• Very much looking forward to reading Paul Kiel’s e-book, The Great American Foreclosure Story, focusing on one woman’s struggle with foreclosure, and bringing in the larger elements of the crisis.

• The Obama campaign ought to know that this push to put marriage equality in the Democratic platform will not go away.

• The European Court of Human Rights gave its blessing to the potential extradition by Britain of several terrorist suspects to the US.

• Ben Bernanke takes a look at shadow banking, or the new money, if you prefer.

• Demand for skilled worker visas is a decent sign for the economy.

• This is part of a pattern: a stakeholder has a problem with some portion or another of the Affordable Care Act, so the federal agencies move to delay it.

• Signs of crisis in Europe: not just high bond yields, but also the death of the restaurant in Ireland.

• The cease-fire in Syria is all but dead, as Kofi Annan lamely claims that it could still work. Over 1,000 have died in the last eight days of the “cease-fire,” according to one opposition group.

• With the General Services Administration in disarray, Darrell Issa sees a chance to capitalize on the fallout.

• You probably won’t see labor rights front and center in the Wisconsin recalls. They’ve never really tried to make that case.

• The long-awaited report on the UC-Davis pepper-spraying incident won’t have the cops’ names attached.

• Chaos in China, as the wife of top party official Bo Xilai is accused of murdering a British businessman.

• The non-voting delegate to Congress from American Samoa has become the best friend to Bahrain, mostly because of his friendship with their chief lobbyist in the US.

• Rick Perlstein profiles GOP billionaire funder Sheldon Adelson. After reading this, you will not stay at the Venetian again.

• Marriage equality in Nevada will come through the courts, as a new case gets filed.

• Dave Zirin on Ozzie Guillen’s suspension as manager of the Miami Marlins baseball team, for his positive words about Fidel Castro.

• British Prime Minister David Cameron will visit Burma, a success story for Western foreign policy so far.

• Hillary Clinton met with the duo behind Texts from Hillary and submitted her own version. Now that’s called capitalizing on a meme.

• The matzo industry.

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David Dayen

David Dayen