The House voted Friday to cancel the annual diversity visa lottery and give those immigration visas to high-tech foreign-born who earn advanced degrees from American universities, as Republicans powered through their chamber the first major immigration bill since the election. The 245-139 vote was a test of the GOP’s plan to tackle immigration piecemeal, and while the bill passed, the strong opposition from Democrats suggests that Republicans’ strategy will face difficult hurdles. And while the chief selling point of the bill was to boost green cards given to science, technology, engineering and technology students, the bigger fight came over
The best thing the Republicans could do right now is to give Obama everything that he wants. Those of us who think, rather than feel, understand that Obama’s course will end up with the United States going bankrupt, because there isn’t enough money on the planet, much less the US, to pay for all the goodies the Democrats want to bestow on their favored constituents.
During a press conference today, House Minority leader Nancy Pelosi signaled that she supported “unilateral control” for the President over the country’s debt limit. “Do you support President Obama having the power to unilaterally increase the debt limit as Secretary Geithner proposed?” asked a reporter. “Yes.” Pelosi answered shortly. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner proposed the idea to Congress yesterday, but the idea was reportedly met with laughter from Senate Minority leader Mitch McConnell R-Ky. Currently the power to increase the debt ceiling lies with Congress. President Obama fought with Congress over extending the debt
On his Wednesday podcast, comedian Adam Carolla blamed Mexican immigrants for overwhelming and destroying California’s troubled public-education system. “Schools are f***ing ruined, and schools are ruined — not because they’re out of money, but because we’re flooded with Mexicans, and they’re not into studying,” Carolla said. “They don’t come from that culture, and we’re not asking them to change. That’s the thing. We have a culture that is not focused on the schoolwork. It’s a different culture. It’s, by the way, why their culture is failing, and their country, ironically — it’s why they’re here.
Previously on "The Perils of Pauline": Last year, our plucky heroine, the wholesome apple-cheeked American republic, was trapped in an express elevator hurtling out of control toward the debt ceiling. Would she crash into it? Or would she make some miraculous escape? Yes! At the very last minute of her white-knuckle thrill ride to her rendezvous with destiny, she was rescued by Congress´ decision to set up... a Super Committee! Those who can, do. Those who can´t, form a committee. Those who really can´t, form a Super Committee – and then put John Kerry on it for good measure.
"Males Play Sports Much More Than Females," reads the headline on a press release from Grand Valley State University in Allendale, Mich. Man bites dog, right? No. "To see what is in front of one´s nose needs a constant struggle," George Orwell observed. In today´s academic world, the insight that the sexes are different is as revolutionary as Winston Smith´s insight that two plus two make four was in Orwell´s "Nineteen Eighty-Four."
Big thanks to the mighty Iowahawk for pointing me to this Washington Post story about how awesome it is to lower your standards: Step into an alleyway in the Northeast Washington neighborhood known as Stronghold, and you will see a vegetable patch, a campfire, a view of the Capitol and a cluster of what neighbors call “those tiny people, building their tiny houses.” The people aren’t really tiny, but their homes are — 150 to 200 square feet of living space, some with gabled roofs, others with bright cedar walls, compact bathrooms
As we awaken to the spectacle of yesterday’s Palestinian coup in the General Assembly — symptomatic of a colossal failure of American leadership — it is worth underscoring the important op-ed authored by former Attorney General Michael Mukasey and Touro Institute’s Anne Bayefsky in Thursday’s Wall Street Journal. (Snip)There is her remarkable propensity not to show up at work, including in crucial moments like Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech to the General Assembly on Iran’s pursuit of nuclear weapons — a powerful signal of Obama’s distancing of our government from a beleaguered ally,
Chile and Mexico will manage to a great extent to avoid the negative prospects from OECD members in the next two years. The half year report from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development anticipates a serious weakening of activity in the Euro zone, the US and Japan, but the two OECD Latinamerican members as well as emerging power Brazil will have a contrasting performance. In the case of Chile and Mexico, the OECD report upped this year’s expectations fuelled by strong domestic demand, but for 2013 was less enthusiastic since exports to rich countries are expected to drop.
Planned Parenthood of South Central New York is breaking away from the national organization, changing its name and going solo. In early 2013, the group — which has locations in Binghamton, Norwich, Oneonta, Sidney and Walton — will become Family Planning of South Central New York, an independent nonprofit. Headline split by staff.
A treasure haul salvaged from a sunken Spanish galleon sunk by British warships in 1804 was unveiled today. The loot was found in the wreck of Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes and had been at the centre of a five-year legal battle between a U.S. salvage company and Spain. US firm Odyssey Marine Exploration found the lost treasure off Portugal´s Atlantic coast in 2007. At the time, the treasure was estimated to be worth $500m (£316m). Headline split by staff.
WASHINGTON — Extending the current level of long-term unemployment benefits for another year would add 300,000 jobs to the economy, according to a report from the Congressional Budget Office. The analysis released Wednesday from the nonpartisan office estimates that keeping jobless benefits would cost the government $30 billion. But it would also lead to more spending by the unemployed, boosting demand for goods and services and creating new jobs. Federal long-term unemployment benefits are set to expire on Dec. 29 for more than 2 million workers unless Congress approves an extension. Democrats have called for reauthorization of extended benefits
Washington - After a decade on the run, a fugitive in the largest eco-terrorism case in US history has turned herself in to the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Rebecca Jeanette Rubin, a Canadian citizen who had been living recently in Canada, surrendered to federal agents on Thursday at the international border with Canada in Blaine, Wash., according to federal officials. Following an initial appearance in US District Court in Seattle, she was expected to be transferred to Oregon to stand trial on federal charges including arson, use of a destructive device, and conspiracy.
The recently approved use of E15 fuel made from blending gasoline and ethanol could damage vehicles and void warranties says the American Automobile Association (AAA), which is urging the federal government to ban it from the market. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) approved the fuel earlier this summer, but AAA says only five percent of vehicles on the road are approved by the manufacturers to use the special blend they say causes significant problems such as accelerated engine wear and failure, fuel-system damage and false “check engine” warning lights.
California may find itself in a disastrous fiscal situation, but that won’t stop California’s newly-empowered unions from flexing their muscle. In the aftermath of the failure of Proposition 32, which would have prevented public sector unions from funding politicians, the unions are celebrating their confirmed power by striking. The latest strikes started today with the International Longshore and Warehouse Union Local 63, which shut down the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach. The Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach are the busiest ports in the United States.
Whatever the CEOs of various Wall Street companies discussed with Barack Obama Wednesday night was off limits to reporters trying to ascertain the facts. When the CEOs left the White House, reporters tried to shout questions about the impending fiscal cliff at Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein, but the White House deployed three uniformed Secret Service officers to prevent reporters from interacting with the CEOs. Even camera crews were rebuffed in their attempt to erect stand-up locations for evening news pictures. Blankfein did appear on CNBC and CNN before he left the White House,
A possible $1 trillion bailout is coming—and soon. America’s now-nationalized student loan industry just reached a value of $1 trillion, according to Citigroup, growing at a 20 percent-per-year pace. Since President Obama nationalized the industry (a tacked-on provision of the Obamacare bill), tuition has gone up 25 percent and the three-year default rate is at a record 13.4 percent. Ron discussed this problem last night with Larry Kudlow: With many young people unable to pay their loans (average graduating debt is about $29,000), Citigroup and others are speculating that this industry might be ripe for a bailout.
President Barack Obama gave remarks on the looming "fiscal cliff" at a manufacturing facility in Pennsylvania, the same day Republicans are panning his initial offer. Obama spoke after touring the Rodon Group manufacturing facility in Hatfield Township, which most notably has manufactured more than 30 billion parts for the K´NEX toy company. “I’ve been keeping my own naughty and nice list in Washington, so you should keep your eye on who gets K’NEX this year," he quipped. He moved onto the fiscal cliff, which he said was "not some run of the mill debate."
NPD research published some horrible news for Microsoft yesterday. Despite releasing an entirely new operating system on October 22 of this year, Windows PC sales shrank 21 percent between 10/21 and 11/17 versus the same period last year. Windows 8 tablet sales during that period were "almost nonexistent" – just 1 percent of all Windows 8 sales. “It hasn’t made the market any worse, but it hasn’t stimulated things either,” Stephen Baker, an analyst at NPD, told The New York Times. “It hasn’t provided the impetus to sales everybody hoped for.” No kidding. Yesterday, we reported other bad news:
Should the state be doing more to protect the interests of the corrupt, powerful, mendacious, rapacious, self-serving establishment? I don´t think so.[Snip]Yet if Leveson´s statutory regulations are implemented, that will certainly be the net result. How do I know? Because I´ve experienced for myself the results of this law of unintended consequences at the hands of our current regulator the Press Complaints Commission. Don´t get me wrong: I believe the PCC is run by decent, fair-minded people anxious to strike a balance between the need to preserve a free press and the need to defend the vulnerable from
I am a pro-choice Republican. We are not an endangered species. Since the Republican Party declared itself pro-life, most of us have been in the closet. I appreciate that both viewpoints are sincerely held: Pro-choicers believe that the government should not intrude in such a private decision; pro-lifers believe that life begins at conception. I have supported each. Raised Catholic, I accepted the church’s doctrine that abortion was morally wrong. This was before Roe v. Wade, so in many states abortion was also illegal. A personal experience changed my view. At 28, pregnant with my third child,
The AAA says the Environmental Protection Agency and gasoline retailers should halt the sale of E15, a new ethanol blend that could damage millions of vehicles and void car warranties. AAA, which issued its warning today, says just 12 million of more than 240 million cars, trucks and SUVs now in use have manufacturers´ approval for E15. Flex-fuel vehicles, 2012 and newer General Motors vehicles, 2013 Fords and 2001 and later model Porsches are the exceptions, according to AAA, the nation´s largest motorist group, with 53.5 million members. "It is clear that millions of Americans are unfamiliar with E15,
Former Republican presidential candidate Jon Huntsman said Friday that the Republican Party should stress its "libertarian roots" rather than "fringe" social issues as it evaluates its election losses. “I think the deliberation about the Republican Party that we’re having is a very healthy thing," Huntsman told CNN. "And if we don’t wind up at the end of the exercise with a mission statement that is one sentence long, then we’re toast. That one statement ought to be, ‘Balance the budgets and get out of people’s lives.’ And you ought to build the party around that because we have strong
A group of House Democrats has formed its own “Gang of Six” to push for progressive tax reform — in which the expiration of the Bush-era tax rates for the wealthiest Americans is “just the beginning.” “In response to the call for progressives to draw a red line in the fiscal cliff sand, here is our big picture stance on corporate and individual tax reform,” Rep. Michael Honda (D-Calif.) said in a statement. “Six progressive tax principles from a new Gang of Six. The expiration of the Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest