WaPo: Three quarters of whites don’t have any non-white friends

Colbert's black "friend" Alan
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WaPo: Three quarters of whites don’t have any non-white friends. Not a surprise.

Colbert's black "friend" Alan

Colbert’s black “friend” Alan

An easy rule of thumb to determine if someone besides really has friends from other cultures and ethnicities: check the photos from their graduations, wedding parties (not just weddings), baby showers & kids birthdays, holidays, religious rituals and family funerals. Real friends will be present in a bunch of those photos over the years*.

*Employees and servants don’t count.

Friends like these who aren’t friends

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Obama isn’t a schmoozer but to get background, the New York Times quotes two Senators who are members of the Democratic caucus without noting their specific willingness to oppose the President:

“Maybe if something isn’t working, you’d say, ‘What can I do better?’ ” said Senator Joe Manchin III, Democrat of West Virginia, expressing dismay that the president seemed to have little interest in taking a warmer approach with Democrats. “Maybe we wanted something different. But it kind of is what it is.”Asked to characterize his relationship with the president, Mr. Manchin, a centrist Democrat who has often been a bridge builder in the Senate, said: “It’s fairly nonexistent. There’s not much of a relationship.”Few senators feel a personal connection to the president.“In order to work with people, you need to establish the relationship first before you ask for something,” said Senator Angus King of Maine, an independent member of the Democratic caucus. “And I think one of the things the White House has not done well and the president has not done well is the simple idea of establishing relationships before there is a crisis.”

via Obama Is Seen As Frustrating His Own Party – NYTimes.com.

King may caucus with GOP after these coming midterms.
Manchin sued President Obama over EPA regulations before Boehner did.

They aren’t the people Obama needs to caucus with first. The biggest deal in this article is Harry Reid’s disappointment in the President. All the rest is centrism for centrism’s sake. King will probably caucus with the majority party and Manchin is a very conservative Democrat. Not the core of the Democrats senate base.

“systematic weaknesses”

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“systematic weaknesses”

Revelations that the government’s largest post-conviction review of forensic evidence has found widespread problems counter earlier FBI claims that a single rogue examiner was at fault. Instead, they feed a growing debate over how the U.S. justice system addresses systematic weaknesses in past forensic testimony and methods.

“I see this as a tip-of-the-iceberg problem,” said Erin Murphy, a New York University law professor and expert on modern scientific evidence.

via Federal review stalled after finding forensic errors by FBI lab unit spanned two decades – The Washington Post.

Let’s see how far this goes.

“No Labels”

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Who could have guessed:

In July 2013, No Labels held a rally where lawmakers of both parties crowded a park outside the Capitol, stood on a grandstand and one by one declared themselves “problem solvers.” The government shut down a few months later as Republicans, including some who appeared on that stage, refused to allow a budget to pass unless it defunded the president’s health care law.

[...]

It turns out that for a group that consistently bills itself as above the partisan politics and the corrosive culture of Washington, No Labels has come to exemplify some of the most loathed qualities of the town’s many interest groups.

[...]

Among those donors are a former top Enron employee, John Arnold, and his wife; Alfred Taubman, a real estate magnate who spent 10 months in prison for antitrust violations, and his wife; and No Labels’ own legal counsel. Top GOP donor John Canning Jr., a private-equity chairman, hosted a June luncheon for the group in Chicago to familiarize other prospective supporters and is himself a donor, though neither he nor No Labels would disclose how much he has donated. 

via No Labels? No results? No problem. – Yahoo News.

No Labels = More donor access, less constituent service. The Republicans in the group got to call themselves “problem solvers” and went right back to obstruction they said they were committed to. The Democrats in the group seem to have taken their word for it.

Joho the Blog: “Municipal nets, municipal electric power, and learning from history”

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Fourth, and most important, the history of the electric power industry teaches that the presence or threat of competition from the public sector is one of the best and surest ways to secure quality service and reasonable prices from private enterprises involved in the delivery of critical public services.

via Joho the Blog » Municipal nets, municipal electric power, and learning from history

Read the whole article from 1994. Applies to every utility we know.

No News Cycle

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The World Cup is going on. It’s the middle of baseball season. Wimbledon just finished and there will be a large amount of tournaments leading to the US Open. All those things generate genuine sports news. The NBA has no news to report and yet every SportsCenter is full of people making claims about what they can see and can’t see happening based upon their own guesses. No news happened. It’s a no news cycle. Not too depressing until you realize that you get the same thing on all of the cable news channels.