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Rich people are special

They operate under a completely different set of rules.

Who would have thought a TV talk show host/satirists would prove himself to be smarter and more ethical than most of the people on the U.S. Supreme Court? Well, probably most of us. More here.

An open letter

To the New York Times staffers, from Russ Baker.

Terrorism

Minnesota has a very large Somali population, and this is a very stupid thing.

Back in Zuccotti Park

They’re backkk….

Updated, 10:07 a.m. | Security guards working for Brookfield Properties took down a cordon of metal barricades surrounding Zuccotti Park on Tuesday evening, but entered the park later that night to enforce rules forbidding anyone to lie down.

The police arrested three people late Tuesday, a woman and two men, and charged them with trespassing, obstructing governmental administration and resisting arrest.

More than 200 Occupy Wall Street protesters milled inside the park past midnight, celebrating the removal of the barricades, which some lawyers had said violated city laws.

Moira Meltzer-Cohen, 34, a law student from Bedford-Stuyvesant, said that she was in a meeting in a public atrium on Wall Street on Tuesday when word began circulating that the barricades were being taken down. She said she rushed to the park and saw security guards stacking barricades that had ringed the park since the police cleared an Occupy Wall Street encampment there in mid-November, forcing protesters to enter single file.

“People flooded in, and there was a lot of jubilation,” she said. “There was so much joy because the park had been caged for so long.”

Vestiges from the park’s recent past emerged. Protesters brought crates of books left over from a library that had been established at the park before it was cleared. They also ladled out meals from large containers, something that Brookfield guards had prevented over the last two months.

Vulture capitalism

While Perry is certainly as bad in his own way and is simply looking for anything he can use to attack Mittens, the fact remains that he’s right. Voters will certainly be wary of Romney’s background.

Does austerity work?

What Duncan said. Morons.

Slap on the hand

Rich Eskow with details of the administration’s proposed bank settlement:

The Obama White House continues to push for a settlement that would let bankers avoid being punished – or even investigated – for a wave of mortgage-related crimes that includes perjury, tax evasion, and several types of fraud.[1]

Despite the President’s new-found populism – rhetorically, anyway – officials in his Administration continue to push an unfair deal designed to conceal the financial Crime of the Century.

The Financial Times reported on new details of the proposed settlement, whose stated purpose is to punish banks and reduce the amount of money owed by underwater homeowners. But it’s increasingly clear that the deal wouldn’t help homeowners very much and wouldn’t punish bankers at all.

Banks could lower those loan balances by reducing the amount owed on mortgages owned by investors and not by the bank itself. That’s what Bank of America is accused of doing as part of an $8 billion settlement it reached in 2008. This deal would set the stage for a repeat performance.

This proposed deal is still unfair, unjust, and very unbalanced. And it has the Administration’s fingerprints all over it.

Last night

I had on as my guest Michael Patterson, an Iraq war vet from Alaska who is with Occupy D.C., and Stuart Zechman for the second half of the show. It was, as always, very spirited. You can listen here!

Shock treatment

I suspect this move will make him more enemies than friends, since so many people watch the Super Bowl with their kids. Via Raw Story:

People in 40 cities across the country may be subjected to a graphic anti-abortion ad while watching the Super Bowl in February.

The ads are the brainchild of anti-abortion crusader Randall Terry, who founded Operation Rescue. The ads claim abortion is mass murder and show what is purported to be images of aborted fetuses.

He mounted a Democratic primary challenge against President Barack Obama to take advantage of a Federal Communication Commission (FCC) loophole that prevents campaign ads from being censored.

FCC-licensed TV stations can reject ads based on graphic content, but they are required by law to run the ads of federal candidates within the 45-day window of any primary election or caucus in a given state.

But the ads will only run in local markets. NBC is not required by law to air the ads.

Terry plans to air the ads in the 40 cities where he will be on the ballot against Obama in Democratic primaries or caucuses. He has already purchased air time for at least one ad.

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