we did it
I’m so proud of my city! : /
we did it
I’m so proud of my city! : /
In the days since the government shut down, House Republicans have slowly but steadily been coming forward to say they’re ready to pass a bill to fund the government with no strings attached.
So far, at least 28 Republicans have said they’re on board — exceeding the 217 votes needed to pass a “clean” funding bill if all 200 House Democrats joined them and voted in favor. Of course, House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) would have to be willing to put such a bill on the floor in the first place. But if he did, the votes appear to be there for passage, at which point the bill would sail through the Senate and be signed by President Barack Obama, ending the shutdown.
HuffPost has been keeping a running tally of which Republicans have said they’re done trying to force through provisions to delay or defund Obamacare in order to keep the government running. That list is below.
But as of Tuesday, Oct. 8, we’re adding another category: Republicans in that group who have since changed their minds and say they will no longer support a bill that simply reopens the government without extra provisions. Four Republicans have flip-flopped as of Oct. 8, which means the total number of GOP members who publicly support a clean continuing resolution is back down to 24. …
QUICKLY MY BRETHEREN
WHILE THEIR GOVERNMENT IS IN DISARRAY.
THE EMPIRE WILL RISE ONCE MORE.
TIME TO TAKE BACK THE COLONIES.
14 Aug 2010
Friday the 13th is often thought of as an unlucky day - and it lived up to its reputation for one youngster.
At precisely 13:13, a boy aged 13 was seen by the St John Ambulance team at Lowestoft Seafront Air Festival in Suffolk after he was struck by lightning, a spokesman said.
The boy suffered a minor burn and was taken to James Paget Hospital, where he is expected to make a full recovery.
Jason Gillingham, county ambulance officer and on scene at the show, said: ”This was a very minor burn to the boy’s shoulder, but he was conveyed to hospital and is recovering well.”
A second teenager and a woman were also struck by lightning but did not need hospital treatment.
The three were watching a display of the Red Arrows during a downpour when the lightning struck.
… The mood toughened just over a month ago, when I received a phone call from the centre of government telling me: “You’ve had your fun. Now we want the stuff back.” There followed further meetings with shadowy Whitehall figures. The demand was the same: hand the Snowden material back or destroy it. I explained that we could not research and report on this subject if we complied with this request. The man from Whitehall looked mystified. “You’ve had your debate. There’s no need to write any more.”
During one of these meetings I asked directly whether the government would move to close down the Guardian’s reporting through a legal route – by going to court to force the surrender of the material on which we were working. The official confirmed that, in the absence of handover or destruction, this was indeed the government’s intention. Prior restraint, near impossible in the US, was now explicitly and imminently on the table in the UK. But my experience over WikiLeaks – the thumb drive and the first amendment – had already prepared me for this moment. I explained to the man from Whitehall about the nature of international collaborations and the way in which, these days, media organisations could take advantage of the most permissive legal environments. Bluntly, we did not have to do our reporting from London. Already most of the NSA stories were being reported and edited out of New York. And had it occurred to him that Greenwald lived in Brazil?
The man was unmoved. And so one of the more bizarre moments in the Guardian’s long history occurred – with two GCHQ security experts overseeing the destruction of hard drives in the Guardian’s basement just to make sure there was nothing in the mangled bits of metal which could possibly be of any interest to passing Chinese agents. “We can call off the black helicopters,” joked one as we swept up the remains of a MacBook Pro.
Whitehall was satisfied, but it felt like a peculiarly pointless piece of symbolism that understood nothing about the digital age. We will continue to do patient, painstaking reporting on the Snowden documents, we just won’t do it in London. The seizure of Miranda’s laptop, phones, hard drives and camera will similarly have no effect on Greenwald’s work.
The state that is building such a formidable apparatus of surveillance will do its best to prevent journalists from reporting on it. Most journalists can see that. But I wonder how many have truly understood the absolute threat to journalism implicit in the idea of total surveillance, when or if it comes – and, increasingly, it looks like “when”.
We are not there yet, but it may not be long before it will be impossible for journalists to have confidential sources. Most reporting – indeed, most human life in 2013 – leaves too much of a digital fingerprint. Those colleagues who denigrate Snowden or say reporters should trust the state to know best (many of them in the UK, oddly, on the right) may one day have a cruel awakening. One day it will be their reporting, their cause, under attack. But at least reporters now know to stay away from Heathrow transit lounges.
• White House: US given ‘heads up’ before Miranda detained
• Miranda accuses Britain of a ‘total abuse of power’
• Watchdog urges Home Office and police to explain detention
• Scotland Yard says detention ‘legally and procedurally sound’
David Anderson QC becomes latest figure to question treatment of Guardian journalist Glenn Greenwald’s partner
The detention of my partner, David Miranda, by UK authorities will have the opposite effect of the one intended
… Gov. Snyder continues to shortchange Detroit today. Michigan’s economy has been steadily recovering from the Great Recession, but its revenue sharing with Detroit has continued to decline—from $268 million in 2009 to $239 million in 2010 and 2011. Gov. Snyder cut this revenue stream even further last year, by an additional 28%, to $173 million. In short, as Detroit’s problems worsened, he piled on. Snyder and the state legislature treat Detroit like an unwanted foster child.
It’s really no surprise that the governor who signed so-called “Right to Work” legislation designed to weaken unions and undermine collective bargaining, and who cut unemployment benefits for jobless workers at a time of crushing unemployment would also try to separate employees from the pensions they worked decades to earn. Reducing the wages, benefits and income of working people is a goal Snyder shares with governors in Wisconsin, Indiana, Ohio, Florida and many other states.
Detroit’s public workers are not overpaid. The average non-uniformed Detroit public employee earns $41,385 per year—less than the 2010 national average annual wage of $43,194. Employee pay was reduced by 10% during fiscal year 2012. And despite a lot of noise to the contrary, the pension benefits under attack in Detroit aren’t exactly gold-plated either.
The average pension for non-uniformed retirees was less than $19,000 a year in 2011, and future benefits were reduced by more than a third in 2012. Previously, a thirty-year employee would receive a pension of 55% of final average pay and the pension would be increased by 2.25 percent of the original pension amount each year as inflation protection. Under the new, lower benefit structure, a 30-year employee would receive a pension of 45 percent of final pay and receives no COLA.
The city’s fiscal problems are not the fault of Detroit’s public employees. Those problems cannot be solved by flouting the constitutional guarantee that pensions cannot be reduced after they have been earned.
Detroit mired in fresh controversy over sale of 60,000-piece art collection
City suburbs attempting to halt rumoured sale of prestigious art collection, which may be up for grabs in bid to pay city’s debts
The beleaguered city of Detroit, the largest in the US to file for bankruptcy, is embroiled in a fresh controversy over fears that it may be preparing to sell some of its 60,000-piece art collection, one of the most prestigious in the US.
Officials from suburban counties have warned that if the city’s bankruptcy managers sell any assets in the Detroit Institute of Art (DIA) – whose collection includes a self-portrait by Van Gogh, a 27-panel fresco by Diego Rivera and works by Rembrandt and Matisse – they will cut their contributions to its funding. The combined income from three counties surrounding the city is worth $23m a year to the museum, a sum that represents almost 75% of its operating budget. …
… The possibility that city-owned art in the DIA collection might be sold as part of Detroit’s plan to settle an estimated $18bn it owes to bondholders, pensioners and others, continues to be one of the most controversial aspects of the city’s bankruptcy plan.
The contract between the counties and the institute stipulates that it should be operated in accordance with professional museum standards. These include a clause saying that the proceeds of art sold must be used to buy more art.
Selling artwork for other reasons breaches such standards, say representatives of the art institute itself.
The museum and Michigan attorney general Bill Schuette have said that the art cannot be sold because it is held in a charitable trust for the people of Michigan. Orr last week told Reuters he disagreed with that position.
However, Pamela Marcil, a spokeswoman for the DIA, said on Wednesday they were taking the continued threat to the collection seriously. She said that the news about Christie’s engagement with the museum last week had sparked a new wave of protest.
"We are concerned any time it is even mentioned," Marcil said."The situation is unprecedented and no one knows what is going to happen."
But she warned that if the city did sell even a single work of art, “we would take it to court and it could be tied up for years.”
No one from Synder’s office or the office of the emergency manager was available for comment when contacted by the Guardian. …
DETROIT (WXYZ) - An online petition aims to make the Detroit Institute of Arts a National Monument, preventing the sale of its artwork.
With over 3,900 signatures, the MoveOn.org petition created by Donald Handy has nearly reached its goal of 4,000. Handy says “I am a native Detroiter, and I love the Detroit Institue of Arts. The thought of losing its collection—especially the Diego Rivera murals—is heartbreaking.”
It sparked fear that the priceless collection could be sold to help the city pay back some of its $18 billion long term debt.
Handy and other metro Detroiters is attempting to gain the attention of The House of Representatives, The Senate and President Obama. …
There is talk of selling art owned by the City of Detroit, contained within the Detroit Institute of Arts, to pay off the city’s debt. This to me would be like New York City selling the Statue of Liberty, or Washington D.C. selling the Washington Monument. If we designate the Detroit Institute of Arts, including all of the treasures within, as a national monument, this would protect and preserve them for future generations.
President Obama has the power with the stroke of a pen to designate the Detroit Institute of Arts as a national monument.
I am a native Detroiter, and I love the Detroit Institute of Arts. The thought of losing its collection—especially the Diego Rivera murals—is heartbreaking. I can’t just sit by and do nothing while my main source of pride in Detroit is stolen. …
A non-elected bankruptcy lawyer is doing his best to destroy my city and insult her inhabitants, sticking us with the bill his fine dining and hotel entails. Why? He even plans on selling the treasures of a great museum, which is illegal: our art is held in a charitable trust for the people of Michigan.