this n that

In Spain, Gypsies Find Easier Path to Integration. This seems to me a good example of thinking outside the box:

Spain has become so successful, in fact, that it now serves as a model for other European countries, including Romania, Bulgaria and Hungary. Some experts say Spain’s secret is that it has concentrated on practical issues, such as access to housing and jobs. In contrast, they say, some European institutions have concentrated too much on issues of prejudice and political rights.

It both amazes and depresses me that we are at a point where this seems the only doable compromise: forfeit badly needed money by extending tax cuts on the rich in exchange for extending unemployment benefits. Bush Tax-Cut Deal With Jobless Aid Said to Be Near. I would really like to see every single Republican politician wind up on unemployment sometime in the near future for extended periods of time. I mean, honestly.

Prop 8 Pictures, Images and PhotosUpdate on the Californian Proposition 8 court proceedings: Same-Sex Initiative Reaches Next Hurdle. The hearing today has two issues to consider: the first is one of legal standing. Since the Californian government has opted not to defend Proposition 8, the defense has fallen to special interest groups who will need to prove at this hearing that their lives are directly and substantially affected by Judge Walker’s ruling. The second issue to consider is “the actual legality of Proposition 8. Opponents have argued — and Judge Walker agreed — that voters had no legitimate state interest in defining marriage as exclusively between a man and a woman, and provided more than a dozen witnesses during testimony in January to back up their case. Supporters of the measure offered two witnesses.” Either way, this won’t be the end of the issue: the next step is either appealing to a larger array of 9th circuit judges or to the SCOTUS itself. So far the presentation on the part of the defense has pretty much been pathetic, par for the course so far. The tweets were pretty interesting: @AFER Judge Reinhardt: When you’re asked a question, and you don’t know the answer, say so. #Prop8, @CourageCampaign Imperial County attorney Robert Tyler being getting grilled hard on the standing issue. Seems flustered. #Prop8, etc. No word yet on when the ruling itself will be issued. (For a great analysis of what could come of this hearing, see this: Prop 8 Argument Day FAQ — h/t Joe.My.God.) Live chat, transcript, video & wrap up can be found here: 9th Circuit Perry v. Schwarzenegger hearing: live thread and chat.

Surprise, surprise: McConnell Won’t Name a Single Specific Proposal He Endorses from Deficit Commission. Hey, McConnell was “proud” of the conservative members of the Catfood Commission. Yep, we know how this drill goes — stay quiet and let the Dems get all the flak. It works, too.

Back into *facepalm* territory: Jamie Dimon Profile Misses The Point: Trusting Bankers Is Too Stupid To Try Again.

Mr. “Contract on America” is either delusional or onto something. Maybe he should run with Palin: Gingrich: A Run For President Is ‘Doable’.

I find this incomprehensible: Budget-Cutting Colleges Bid Some Languages Adieu. No new French, Italian, Russian or classics majors? This really is a war on education.

Oh, snap. Not just Glenn Beck, but Teabaggers in general. Autocaptioned, and the dude is pretty easy to follow — camera stays on their faces: Bill Maher: Glenn Beck Like L Ron Hubbard.

Given the hysteria over Wikileaks, I’ve refrained from addressing it too far at length. But this seems a more nuanced take on it (and I did link to the original article earlier): Fareed Zakaria: What the WikiLeaks Reveal Really Means. Also, the emerging go-to blog outlining the Wikileaks info seems to be Greg Mitchell at The Nation: BLOGGING THE WIKILEAKS.

And yes, for those of us who want to make it better, we’ve got our work cut out for us: VA official Eugene Delgaudio’s latest: ‘homos recruit our children into their filthy perversion’. You know, it’s entirely possible to oppose something and not turn it into a homophobic rant. We were doing just fine objecting to the TSA pat downs, thankyouverymuchasshole. Now go slink back into that hole you slithered out of. Jesus.

Oh, not again: New Facebook Profiles Unveiled (PICTURE): See The Redesign.

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