A 55-year-old biker protesting New York State’s law requiring helmet use died at a hospital Saturday after striking his head in an accident.
The Associated Press reports that Phillip A. Contos of Parish, N.Y., was riding with others through the town of Onondaga on Saturday afternoon without head protection, to protest the state’s requirement that bikers wear helmets.
State Troopers told the Syracuse Post-Standard that Contos was driving a 1983 Harley Davidson when his bike fishtailed and he flipped over the handlebars, striking his head on the pavement. He was later pronounced dead at Upstate University Hospital. Police say that had he been wearing a helmet, Contos would probably have survived the accident.
The ride was organized in part by ABATE (American Bikers Aimed for Education), according to a local ABC affiliate reporting on the accident. A spokesperson for the group said they didn’t know if Contos was a member.
David Dayen explains the likely deficit deal, and why it’s so bad for Democrats.
So what’s it all about? The answer, of course, is that the GOP never cared about the deficit — not a bit. It has always been nothing but a club with which to beat down opposition to an ideological goal, namely the dissolution of the welfare state. They’re not interested, at all, in a genuine deficit-reduction deal if it does not serve that goal.
And everyone who has preached bipartisanship, who has called for a meeting of minds on the subject, is either a fraud or a chump.
Oh no he didn’t. Did he just call the president a chump? I think he did.
I’ve tried to think of how to best describe the main business artery in my neighborhood, but Chip does it so much better.
Boston EMTs faking certifications? That’s really bad.
Is such a self-righteous little poser:
A Senate subcommittee held a hearing this week on funding the existing Older Americans Act, including a $2 billion investment to prevent senior hunger. The panel, led by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), explored how the government can actually save money through these investments.
It’s really not that complicated. By spending money to prevent hunger and malnutrition among the elderly, Americans can save on health care and nursing home costs.
Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), labeled “America’s Dumbest Senator” by some, was flabbergasted. “It’s curious that only in Washington can you spend $2 billion and claim that you’re saving money,” he said. “The idea or notion that spending money in Washington somehow is saving money really flies past most of the taxpayers.”
I think Sanders and Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) made this pretty clear, but I’m nevertheless fascinated by the ways in which the right is completely unfamiliar with notion of “penny wise, pound foolish.”
In the case of the Older Americans Act, the government spends a little money up front, and in the process, doesn’t have to spend more money later on more expensive care. Rand Paul thinks this, on a conceptual level, is ridiculous. I think Rand Paul, on any level, is ridiculous.
Understanding this just requires a little bit of thought. If we cut spending on volcano monitoring and tsunami warnings, we save a little money on maintenance, but pay a lot of money on damage repairs after disaster strikes. If we cut spending on food safety, we save a little money on inspection, but pay a lot of money on health care costs when consumers get sick. If we cut spending for the Securities and Exchange Commission, as Republicans are desperate to do, we save a little money on enforcement, but pay a lot of money to clean up financial catastrophes.
For every dollar the IRS spends on audits, liens, and property seizures, the government brings in more than $10. If we spend less on IRS enforcement, as Republicans demand, it costs us more.
Is this really that confusing?
It’s amazing what people will believe, once they’ve decided they should.
In yet another example of how wingnut politicians act without thinking of the logical consequences, Georgia Republicans passed a law that’s leaving their agricultural industry in sad shape:
After enacting House Bill 87, a law designed to drive illegal immigrants out of Georgia, state officials appear shocked to discover that HB 87 is, well, driving a lot of illegal immigrants out of Georgia.
It might be funny if it wasn’t so sad.
Thanks to the resulting labor shortage, Georgia farmers have been forced to leave millions of dollars’ worth of blueberries, onions, melons and other crops unharvested and rotting in the fields. It has also put state officials into something of a panic at the damage they’ve done to Georgia’s largest industry.
Barely a month ago, you might recall, Gov. Nathan Deal welcomed the TV cameras into his office as he proudly signed HB 87 into law. Two weeks later, with farmers howling, a scrambling Deal ordered a hasty investigation into the impact of the law he had just signed, as if all this had come as quite a surprise to him.
And you know, here’s where the chickens really come home to roost. Politicians act as if undocumented immigrants contribute nothing to the nation’s economy, when the truth is, they do damned hard and dirty work that Americans consider beneath them:
The first batch of probationers started work last week at a farm owned by Dick Minor, president of the Georgia Fruit and Vegetable Growers Association. In the coming days, more farmers could join the program.
So far, the experiment at Minor’s farm is yielding mixed results. On the first two days, all the probationers quit by mid-afternoon, said Mendez, one of two crew leaders at Minor’s farm.
“Those guys out here weren’t out there 30 minutes and they got the bucket and just threw them in the air and say, `Bonk this, I ain’t with this, I can’t do this,'” said Jermond Powell, a 33-year-old probationer. “They just left, took off across the field walking.”
Mendez put the probationers to the test last Wednesday, assigning them to fill one truck and a Latino crew to a second truck. The Latinos picked six truckloads of cucumbers compared to one truckload and four bins for the probationers.
“It’s not going to work,” Mendez said. “No way. If I’m going to depend on the probation people, I’m never going to get the crops up.”
You’d think that someone would figure out that undocumented laborers working for crap wages are what keeps food prices low enough for the entire nation. But then, you’d be assuming that these showboating politicians are smart enough to think of anything that can’t fit on a bumper sticker.
Rachel Maddow went on a tear Thursday, condemning Democrats for forcing Anthony Weiner to resign and warning them that they have damaged themselves “probably for a generation” because of their actions.
Maddow has repeatedly decried what she views as a double standard: Weiner was forced out because of his sexts and pictures, but Republicans like David Vitter and John Ensign managed to stay in office even though they broke the law.
“Democrats have not only refused to hold Republicans accountable for the double standard, but they have joined with Republicans in piling on with the demands that Anthony Weiner had to resign even as David Vitter stays in the Senate,” Maddow said. She then went on a long monologue, listing all the Republicans and Democrats who were not forced out of office even after admitting to more serious ethical violations than Weiner.
“Anthony Weiner, who was not accused of corruption, who does not appear to have done anything illegal, who does not even appear to have had sex with any of the women with any of the people with whom he had scandalous talk and picture-taking, for him a line was drawn,” Maddow concluded, her voice bristling with anger. She then turned her focus on the media, saying that the story was actually “the media covering the media ending a man’s career.”
Maddow ended by addressing Democrats. She issued a dire warning.
“Congratulations, Democrats,” she said. “In an era of unhinged, ideological, big money conservative media that is wholly and admittedly divorced from the precepts of journalism, in hounding Anthony Weiner into resigning … you have just fed and unleashed this beast onto yourselves, probably for a generation.”
Was this really necessary? Of course not.
Bank of America threatens a homeowner with foreclosure unless he writes a check for $0.00. No, really.