Shock and Awkward
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Shock and Awkward
Making Sense of Senselessness
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Secret Fed Loans Gave Banks Undisclosed $13B

Secret Fed Loans Gave Banks Undisclosed $13B | Shock and Awkward | Scoop.it
The Federal Reserve and the big banks fought for more than two years to keep details of the largest bailout in U.S. history a secret. Now, the rest of the world can see what it was missing.
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GOP: 'In God We Trust' bill needed to remind President Obama

GOP: 'In God We Trust' bill needed to remind President Obama | Shock and Awkward | Scoop.it

"This is simply an exercise in saying, 'We're more religious than the other people, we're more godly than the other people, and by the way, let's waste time and divert people's attention from the real issues that we're not dealing with,' like unemployment," he [Nadler, the only Democrat who spoke] said.

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INFOGRAPHIC: House GOP Bill Guts Vital Programs While Protecting Special Interest Tax Breaks

INFOGRAPHIC: House GOP Bill Guts Vital Programs While Protecting Special Interest Tax Breaks | Shock and Awkward | Scoop.it

Last week, House Republicans released their draft version of the 2012 budget for labor, health and human services, and education, which, if enacted, would slash job training programs, gut key worker protections, and eliminate Pell Grants for 1 million students.

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How the Austerity Class Rules Washington

How the Austerity Class Rules Washington | Shock and Awkward | Scoop.it
A powerful, bipartisan coalition of deficit hawks has manufactured a center-right consensus that dominates the Beltway.
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Senate Republicans block prison-reform study

Senate Republicans block prison-reform study | Shock and Awkward | Scoop.it

Two Republicans, Oklahoma’s Tom Coburn and Texas’s Kay Bailey Hutchison, argued that the federal government would be overstepping its constitutional bounds by spending $5 million to study state and local justice systems, according to the Norfolk Virginian-Pilot. “We are absolutely ignoring the Constitution if we do this,” Coburn said.

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CHART OF THE DAY: The ‘47 Percent’ Pay Their Fair Share

CHART OF THE DAY: The ‘47 Percent’ Pay Their Fair Share | Shock and Awkward | Scoop.it

The graph doesn't match the headline, but the point is clear, payroll taxes (which are steadfastly being ignored by the GOP) are a far bigger part of Americans' tax burden in terms of total dollars extracted than say, the corporate tax, which they prattle on about endlessly and as important as the individual income tax, with which they are obsessed.

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Rachel Maddow: Faith in Wall Street puts retirement at risk

Rachel Maddow: Faith in Wall Street puts retirement at risk | Shock and Awkward | Scoop.it

Rachel Maddow reviews the ways Wall Street privatization has eroded the traditional pillars of retirement , leaving Social Security the only remaining reliable source of lasting income for Americans who don’t want to have to work until they die.

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The heat is on: A new analysis of the temperature record leaves little room for the doubters. The world is warming.

The heat is on: A new analysis of the temperature record leaves little room for the doubters. The world is warming. | Shock and Awkward | Scoop.it

At a time of exaggerated doubts about the instrumental temperature record, this should help promulgate its main conclusion: that the existing mean estimates are in the right ballpark. That means the world is warming fast.

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An update on the supercommittee

An update on the supercommittee | Shock and Awkward | Scoop.it

The puzzle of the supercommittee was always how they would resolve the seemingly intractable problem that led to their creation: Republicans won’t consider tax increases, and without tax increases, Democrats won’t consider entitlement cuts. My colleagues Lori Montgomery and Paul Kane report that, with one month and three days left to go, they haven’t figured it out.

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Book: Republic, Lost: How Money Corrupts Congress--and a Plan to Stop It

Republic, Lost: How Money Corrupts Congress--and a Plan to Stop It

~ Lawrence Lessig (author)More about this product
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With heartfelt urgency and a keen desire for righting wrongs, Harvard law professor Lawrence Lessig takes a clear-eyed look at how we arrived at this crisis: how fundamentally good people, with good intentions, have allowed our democracy to be co-opted by outside interests, and how this exploitation has become entrenched in the system.

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In Which Eric Cantor Utters the Words 'Income Disparity'

In Which Eric Cantor Utters the Words 'Income Disparity' | Shock and Awkward | Scoop.it
Ever since the spittle-drenched results of the 2010 midterms swept him into being the Majority Leader of the House of Representatives, Cantor has demonstrated a remarkable ability to combine complete ignorance of practically every major issue with the unctuous personality of a third-string maitre d' at a fourth-string steakhouse.

 

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'False Equivalence' Reaches Onionesque Heights, but in a Real Paper

'False Equivalence' Reaches Onionesque Heights, but in a Real Paper | Shock and Awkward | Scoop.it

The Democrats would actually "control" the Senate if a 51-vote majority were enough to pass most measures. But they don't control it, with 53 Dem+Indep seats, when the 60-vote standard becomes routine. This is too important a fact to be left out of accounts of what is happening in the Senate.

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The promise and peril of wellness

The promise and peril of wellness | Shock and Awkward | Scoop.it

“We raised the premiums for all employees,” Roizen said. But employees didn’t necessarily have to pay the increase. “If you’re doing a healthy program — attending Weight Watchers or Shape Up and Go — you get a rebate.”

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How the GOP Became the Party of the Rich

How the GOP Became the Party of the Rich | Shock and Awkward | Scoop.it

The inside story of how the Republicans abandoned the poor and the middle class to pursue their relentless agenda of tax cuts for the wealthiest one percent

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Wall Street Isn't Winning It's Cheating

Wall Street Isn't Winning It's Cheating | Shock and Awkward | Scoop.it
Cain seems like a nice enough guy, but I nearly blew my stack when I heard this. When you take into consideration all the theft and fraud and market manipulation and other evil shit Wall Street bankers have been guilty of in the last ten-fifteen years, you have to have balls like church bells to trot out a propaganda line that says the protesters are just jealous of their hard-earned money.

 

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Paul Ryan Tells Student He Should Work Three Jobs To Pay For College, Not Use Pell Grants

Paul Ryan Tells Student He Should Work Three Jobs To Pay For College, Not Use Pell Grants | Shock and Awkward | Scoop.it

At a time when student loan debt is hitting new heights and joblessness is above nine percent, Ryan’s response to a student genuinely concerned about financing his higher education is quite telling. To Ryan, students should have to live the real American dream of working three jobs in order to pay back a mountain of cash to a bank.

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Tax the rich: Should millionaires really pay more?

Tax the rich: Should millionaires really pay more? | Shock and Awkward | Scoop.it
The fight over raising levies on the wealthy, a theme of the 'Occupy Wall Street' protests, is about more than money. It's a clash over fundamental American values.

 

A meandering, but interesting article - Shockward

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Colbert: Herman Cain Canes the Unemployed

According to Herman Cain, the unemployed should be out in front of the White House blaming themselves for not having jobs.

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Daily Show: Scorn in the U.S.A.

It must be tough for Republicans to love America so much but hate almost three-quarters of the people living in it.

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Book: Confidence Men: Wall Street, Washington, and the Education of a President

Book: Confidence Men: Wall Street, Washington, and the Education of a President | Shock and Awkward | Scoop.it

Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist Ron Suskind introduces readers to an ensemble cast, from the titans of high finance to a new generation of reformers, from petulant congressmen and acerbic lobbyists to a tight circle of White House advisers—and, ultimately, to the president himself, as you’ve never before seen him. Based on hundreds of interviews and filled with piercing insights and startling disclosures, Confidence Men brings into focus the collusion and conflict between the nation’s two capitals—New York and Washington, one of private gain, the other of public purpose—in defining confidence and, thereby, charting America’s future.

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Book: All the Devils Are Here: The Hidden History of the Financial Crisis

All the Devils Are Here: The Hidden History of the Financial Crisis

~ Joe Nocera (author)More about this product
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All the Devils Are Here goes back several decades to weave the hidden history of the financial crisis in a way no previous book has done. It explores the motivations of everyone from famous CEOs, cabinet secretaries, and politicians to anonymous lenders, borrowers, analysts, and Wall Street traders. It delves into the powerful American mythology of homeownership. And it proves that the crisis ultimately wasn't about finance at all; it was about human nature.

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U.S. Subgroups Say Economy, Jobs Are Most Important Problem

U.S. Subgroups Say Economy, Jobs Are Most Important Problem | Shock and Awkward | Scoop.it

The economy and unemployment have consistently led Gallup's Most Important Problem list since January 2010, with just under 30% of Americans on average mentioning each issue in the first five months of 2011.

 

Several issues that often spark hot political debate or are associated with special-interest groups -- abortion, race relations, the environment, Medicare, and gay rights -- receive mentions of 1% or less each.

 

Is abortion one of the most important issues? No.

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Book: How Stupidity Became a Virtue in the Land of the Free

Idiot America: How Stupidity Became a Virtue in the Land of the Free

~ Charles P. Pierce (author)More about this product
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With droll prose and an appreciation for irony, Pierce skewers what he sees as America's lamentable embrace of idiocy, and he illustrates how it has thrown us perilously off balance. He contrasts the ubiquitous ignorance and gullibility of today's body politic with the thoughts of James Madison, who heralded common sense, knowledge, and experience as virtues.

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Inside Obama's War Room | Rolling Stone

Inside Obama's War Room | Rolling Stone | Shock and Awkward | Scoop.it

What led the president to overrule his top military advisers and intervene in Libya - and what it says about his evolution as commander in chief

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Media coverage of Obama largely negative, study finds

Media coverage of Obama largely negative, study finds | Shock and Awkward | Scoop.it

Rick Perry really did get an easy ride, Ron Paul really has been ignored and Barack Obama truly can’t catch a break.

 

That's a rough summary of the findings of a massive, computer-based study of campaign coverage by the Pew Research Center's Project for Excellence in Journalism.

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