Senators Propose a New Glass-Steagall Act

Jul 12, 2013, 12:49 pm EST
Senators Propose a New Glass-Steagall Act

Senator Elizabeth Warren, Democrat of Massachusetts, introduced a new piece of legislation on Thursday.

The bill, named the “21st Century Glass-Steagall Act”, is also backed by Senator John McCain, Republican of Arizona.

The bill is designed to function like the original Glass-Steagall Act (which was put into place in the 1930′s but ended in 1999), by limiting what regulated banks can do. If passed, the bill might force many banks to give up their trading operations, reports The New York Times. Read 

House Passes Farm Bill Without Food Stamp Funds

Jul 12, 2013, 12:05 pm EST

Republications managed to get the farm bill through the House on Thursday.

The Farm Bill passed yesterday with a vote of 216-to-208. The bill had been put to vote in June, but was shot down 234-195.

After this failed attempt, the GOP split the farm bill into two by removing the food stamp funds from it. Read 

Obama Catches Flak Over Love of… Broccoli?

Jul 11, 2013, 10:33 am EST
Obama Catches Flak Over Love of… Broccoli?

When Barack Obama responded to a child interviewer peppering him about his favorite food by saying that he relished broccoli, he probably wasn’t expecting his answer to become the major takeaway from Tuesday’s second annual Kids’ State Dinner, an event geared towards promoting healthy eating.

But Broccoli-gate, as it would come to be known – and specifically the Twitter response to Obama’s pronouncement – dominated coverage of the event, causing Slate’s David Weigel to tweet, “This broccoli discussion is more proof that you could fire half the press corps at random and America would be fine.”

Obama’s choice inspired some healthy skepticism from many corners of the web. @indecision, a Twitter account associated with Comedy Central’s Daily Show, tweeted “Obama tells kid journalist his favorite food is broccoli. And his favorite activity is lying to children,” while the Washington Post’s Alexandra Petri joked that the president’s hobbies include “flossing.” Read 

30,000 California Prisoners Are Refusing to Eat

Jul 10, 2013, 2:17 pm EST

300,000 California prisoners are refusing food in what appears to be a state-wide hunger strike in response to the policy of solitary confinement, with an additional 2,300 inmates refusing to report for prison classes or work detail, the Los Angeles Times reports.

The strike, a protest against prison rules which allow for indefinite isolation of suspected gang members,  has spread from Pelican Bay State Prison to 22 of California’s 33 jails, as well as four institutions in other states. The strikers demand a five-year moratorium on the policy, as well as an end to collective punishment, access to nutritious food, and increased privileges including weekly phone calls and photos from the outside world, according to a petition signed by the strike’s ringleaders.

Despite the size of the demonstration, it is the policy of the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation to officially declare a hunger strike only after an inmate has missed nine meals. Read 

Eliot Spitzer’s ‘Madam’ to Run Against Him for NYC Comptroller

Jul 10, 2013, 2:13 pm EST

Kristin Davis, the madam who supplied Eliot Spitzer with call girls in 2008, is running against Spitzer for the office of New York City Comptroller.

Davis is running as a Libertarian and claims that her 10 years of experience as a senior vice president of a multi-billion dollar hedge fund give her the expertise for the job, reports CNBC.

“This is going to be the funnest campaign ever…I’ve been waiting for my day to face him for five years.” Davis told the Daily News. Read 

Oops! Florida Accidentally Outlaws Smartphones, Computers

Jul 10, 2013, 12:02 pm EST

Legislators in Florida looking to close a loophole in the state’s gambling laws added language to a recently passed bill that is so broad that it could potentially make owning a computer or smartphone illegal in the Sunshine State.

A multi-year probe of illegal gambling cafes in the state led to dozens of arrests and the resignation of the lieutenant governor. Trying to address the problem with a quickly-drafted bill, the state legislature re-defined illegal slot machines as “any machine or device or system or network of devices” used for gaming that use an “account number, code, or other object or information” to activate the game, CNN notes.

The law has already resulted in the shut down of more than 1,000 Internet cafes. Read 

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