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I am not in this thread, Skyler. I AM the thread.
The war of words over who thinks who is worse than the Iranians is just now heating up.
  • For two decades, only college grads have seen their incomes rise. From Matt Bruening at Billmoyers.com:
    The increasing income divide between graduates and non-graduates will probably worsen our country’s already weak levels of social mobility. Research from Dynarsky-Bailey tells us that the percentage of low-income kids who complete college is 9 percent, while the percentage of high-income kids who do so is 54 percent. The divide in college completion among middle class groups moves up proportionately as well. Because parental income is such a strong factor in whether a kid enters and completes college, the growing divergence of income detailed in the above chart will likely just intensify class entrenchment. Graduates will make more and more money, boosting their kids chances of being a graduate, while non-graduates will make less and less money, boosting their kids chances of being non-graduates.
  • Nudity in art is a no-go in San Bernardino County in Southern California.
  • Actual facts about what a government shutdown would look like. For instance:
    There are a whole bunch of key government functions that carry on during a shutdown, including anything related to national security, public safety, or programs written into permanent law (like Social Security). Here's a partial list:

    -- Any employee or office that "provides for the national security, including the conduct of foreign relations essential to the national security or the safety of life and property." That means the U.S. military will keep operating, for one.

    -- Any employee who conducts  "essential activities to the extent that they protect life and property." So, for example: Air traffic control stays open. So do all emergency medical care, food-safety inspections, border patrol, federal prisons, law enforcement, emergency and disaster assistance, overseeing the banking system, operating the power grid, and guarding federal property.

    But, you know, everyone else has to suffer, all because Senate Democrats and President Obama won't agree to repeal their historic and signature achievement.
  • A compelling video from NASA about what the impacts of climate change will be in the coming decades.
  • Don't want to be spoiled about tomorrow's Breaking Bad finale? Here's how to censor yourself.
  • Yet another must-read from Matt Taibbi, this time on Wall Street's efforts to loot public pensions. A sample:
    Nor did anyone know that part of Raimondo's strategy for saving money involved handing more than $1 billion – 14 percent of the state fund – to hedge funds, including a trio of well-known New York-based funds: Dan Loeb's Third Point Capital was given $66 million, Ken Garschina's Mason Capital got $64 million and $70 million went to Paul Singer's Elliott Management. The funds now stood collectively to be paid tens of millions in fees every single year by the already overburdened taxpayers of her ostensibly flat-broke state. Felicitously, Loeb, Garschina and Singer serve on the board of the Manhattan Institute, a prominent conservative think tank with a history of supporting benefit-slashing reforms. The institute named Raimondo its 2011 "Urban Innovator" of the year.

    The state's workers, in other words, were being forced to subsidize their own political disenfranchisement, coughing up at least $200 million to members of a group that had supported anti-labor laws.

    It gets worse from there.

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