All the news, views, and filtered excellence fit to consume during your morning grumpy.
1. If you read only one story about America’s foreclosure crisis, make sure it is this one. Incredible journalism from ProPublica.
Banks have foreclosed on more than 4 million homes since the crisis began in 2007. With almost 6 million loans still in danger of foreclosure, 2012 could very well be the worst year yet.
The banking industry developed tactics of dubious legality — not just robo-signing, which most Americans have heard of by now, but an array of business practices, some dating to the 1990s, that were designed to skirt the law and fatten profits. The federal and state governments largely tolerated these practices until they pushed families into tents and all of us into the Great Recession.
2. The real cost of your iPhone.
3. 10 Big Companies That Pay No Taxes (and Their Favorite Politicians)
Between 2008 and 2011, 26 major American corporations paid no net federal income taxes despite bringing in billions in profits, according to a new report (PDF) from the nonprofit research group Citizens for Tax Justice.
CenterPoint Energy: Electric and gas utility company based in Houston
Profits: $3.1 billion Effective tax rate: -11.3%
Top recipients, 2011-2012
David Dewhurst (R-Texas): $22,050
Gov. Rick Perry (R-Texas): $13,458
Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.): $10,299
Rep. Greg Walden (R-Ore.): $7,000
Rep. Kevin Brady (R-Texas): $4,000
I’d suggest that it’s time for Congress to get serious about corporate tax reform, but we all know it’s not going to happen. If we lived in a Democracy, we might have a shot. But in the American Plutocracy? Doubtful.
4. Henry Paul Monaghan, a conservative constitutional law professor at Columbia Univeristy, makes the case for (as he deems) the obvious constitutionality of Obamacare.
The insurance market is so complex that addressing one aspect of the market can easily create others problems. For example, one longstanding problem is that the insurance model makes affordable health care unattainable for many individuals already in poor health. Congress responded by prohibiting insurers from denying coverage or charging higher rates based upon an individual’s pre-existing health conditions. Yet given that prohibition, one could reasonably conclude that currently healthy individuals might forgo the purchase of insurance until they need it. That would undermine the viability of the insurance pool, which depends on payments from currently healthy individuals to finance health care for those who need it, when they need it.
5. Top 10 facts about the income gap between men and women.
Over a 40-year working career, the average woman loses $431,000 as the result of the wage gap. In fact, if the pay gap between men and women narrows at the current rate, it will take women 45 yrs to receive equal pay
That should be just about the same time that Republicans sign on to support women’s rights.
Fact Of The Day: Ted Nugent dodged the Vietnam draft by shitting himself for 10 days straight before his physical. Real American fucking hero, this guy.
Quote Of The Day: “Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known.” – Carl Sagan
Video Of The Day: When you get home from work tonight and your spouse says, “Hey, what did you do today?”, your answer will be, “Oh, I watched a turtle have an orgasm. So, there’s that.” Also, you’re welcome.
Cartoon Of The Day: “Señor Droopy” – Tex Avery
Song Of The Day: “Prove It” – Television
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