Tuesday, March 16, 2010

The Urban Beat - March 16, 2010

1.  Rachel Maddow talks to Michael Lewis about financial reform.  A must see interview:

3.  Tea Partiers are smart.  They want Speaker Pelosi tried for treason.

For those who are confused about what "Deem and Pass" means (this is Pelosi's favored strategy for this week's health reform vote in the House) via TPM:
Before the bamboozlement gets too far, let's be clear about what the House is considering doing. There are two bills. The senate's original bill and the changes to that bill the House has now negotiated with the Senate. Normally, this is all hashed out in a conference committee. And it's all voted on in a single vote. In this case, that's not possible because of the continuing Republican filibuster in the Senate. So the House is considering taking both bills, consolidating them into a single vote, up or down. The old fashioned way. This isn't 'not having a vote'. And this has been done repeatedly before. Anybody who thinks these two bills shouldn't be passed simultaneously or thinks one or the other shouldn't pass has a simple solution. Vote no. Simple.  This isn't complicated. It's consolidating two votes into one. --Josh Marshall
My favorite policy wonk Ezra Klein explains more about this procedure here.

4.  Ezra Klein pwns NYT's columnist David Brooks.  As he should!

5.  What the heck is President Obama trying to do in Israel.  Jeffrey Goldberg of The Atlantic explains.

6.  Singer John Legend has a rebuttal to Bill Maher's "New Rule" that we shouldn't fire the teachers if students are failing because it's the parents fault.
However, a child’s academic success does not only depend on parenting. Parents control what happens at home. But parents do not control what happens at school where students spend a large portion of their day being educated. Parents don’t determine whether the books are woefully out of date, whether the school and surrounding neighborhood are safe, whether there are too many kids in the classroom, and whether the teacher leading the classroom knows what they are doing. Individual parents can’t always influence those factors, especially when they themselves may be struggling in poverty or working double shifts just to make ends meet.  Read the entire article here.
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