Tomorrow the man who defines everything against progressiveness is set to leave the White House:
President Obama will give his chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel, a send-off Friday as Mr. Emanuel officially announces his departure from the West Wing to run for mayor of Chicago, officials familiar with the decision said.
The White House press secretary, Robert Gibbs, at his daily briefing on Thursday afternoon said that the president will give two personnel announcements on Friday morning from the East Room of the White House. Mr. Gibbs, admitting that he was being purposely “oblique,” would not confirm whether the announcements would concern Mr. Emanuel.
Tata Rahm. You won’t be missed.
A story appearing in the Murdoch owned Wall Street Journal today saying that fast food giant McDonalds is planning on dropping it’s health care coverage for employees because of requirements tied to the new health care bill:
While many restaurants don't offer health coverage, McDonald's provides mini-med plans for workers at 10,500 U.S. locations, most of them franchised. A single worker can pay $14 a week for a plan that caps annual benefits at $2,000, or about $32 a week to get coverage up to $10,000 a year.
Last week, a senior McDonald's official informed the Department of Health and Human Services that the restaurant chain's insurer won't meet a 2011 requirement to spend at least 80% to 85% of its premium revenue on medical care.
But now McDonalds is denying this report:
McDonald's denies reports it's considering dropping health care coverage for some employees in response to a provision of the health care overhaul.
The Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday, citing a memo from McDonald's to federal officials, that McDonald's has warned regulators it could drop its plan for some 30,000 workers unless the government waives a new requirement in the health care overhaul.
The company says in a statement Thursday it has been speaking with federal agencies to understand the law.
As early as next week we could get a ruling from the high court in regards to Fred Phelps and his band of merry hate mongers from Westboro Baptist Church:
The court is set to decide whether members of a fundamentalist church in Kansas who picketed Matthew's funeral with signs bearing anti-gay and anti-Catholic invective have a constitutional right to say what they want.
Or, in intruding on a private citizen's funeral in a hurtful way, have the protesters crossed a line and given Snyder the right to collect millions of dollars for the emotional pain they caused?
The justices will hear arguments in the case next Wednesday.
This will provide an interesting conundrum for the more conservative justices. They claim to be “constitionalists”, and as despicable as Westboro is, they are exercising their first amendment right. On the other hand, the main target of these “protests” are those who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our nation. The question boils down to if we have a right to mourn in piece or not. Hopefully they do the right thing and rule against the idiots that are Westboro Baptist.
Meg Whitman is out there denying that she hired an illegal immigrant for a maid, but the maid’s lawyer is set to release proof today:
Gloria Allred, a Los Angeles attorney who represents Whitman's former maid, Nicky Diaz Santillan, said she would release evidence Thursday showing Whitman was aware of the maid's illegal status as far back as 2003, a claim Whitman denies.
Throughout her employment "Nicky was undocumented and ... Whitman was aware of her status," Allred said Wednesday.
Specifically, Whitman disputes that she received a 2003 letter from the Social Security Administration that said the Social Security number provided by the housekeeper did not match the name on file.
It seems like this election cycle has been the worst so far when it comes to candidates lying. On the other hand, Republicans love a hypocrite, so this could give Whitman even more support.
It has been a growing problem in this nation for decades and it continues to increase every year – income disparity:
The income gap between the richest and poorest Americans grew last year to its widest amount on record as young adults and children in particular struggled to stay afloat in the recession.
The top-earning 20 percent of Americans - those making more than $100,000 each year - received 49.4 percent of all income generated in the U.S., compared with the 3.4 percent earned by those below the poverty line, according to newly released census figures. That ratio of 14.5-to-1 was an increase from 13.6 in 2008 and nearly double a low of 7.69 in 1968.
A different measure, the international Gini index, found U.S. income inequality at its highest level since the Census Bureau began tracking household income in 1967. The U.S. also has the greatest disparity among Western industrialized nations.
The census also shows that those making over $180,000 a year (the top 5%) saw an increase in income last year, while those making less than $50,000 saw their income decline. Like wise lower-skilled adults from 18 to 34 saw the largest increase in poverty levels last year.
The whole investigation into the handling of the late Ted Stevens prosecution took a really interesting turn this weekend:
One of the prosecutors who handled the corruption trial of Alaska Sen. Ted Stevens committed suicide over the weekend, according to his lawyer.
Justice Department prosecutor Nicholas Marsh and five others have been the subject of an investigation by the Justice Department's Office of Professional Responsibility over their handling of the Stevens case, which the Justice Department ultimately dropped amid charges the government did not properly share evidence with Stevens' defense attorneys. The judge in the Stevens case also ordered a special prosecutor to look into it.
Bob Luskin, an attorney for Marsh, told CNN Marsh killed himself but did not provide details. "It did seem he was overwhelmed by the emotional cost of this investigation," said Luskin. According to the attorney, Marsh was in his late 30s.
And for those that can’t remember before 2009, this case was handled by the Bush DOJ, a DOJ that had a lot of questionable practices and was accused of being “politicized”. The final report on this investigation should read like a John Grisham novel.
While going through my feeds in Google Reader this morning, one headline really, REALLY stuck out at me:
The “But Tour”? Oh I’m sure that the right will quickly paint this as more proof of the so-called “Liberal media” and their attempts to smear the good people of the right. CNN did actually correct the typo in the article, which now reads, “Tea Party Express reveals details of national bus tour”, but in readers like Google Reader, the headlines are cached and so they remain. None the less, I really needed a good laugh like this today.
It’s starting to look up for October:
White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel, widely expected to leave the White House to make a long coveted run for Chicago mayor, could make an announcement on his decision as soon as Friday, a source close to him said.
Emanuel has not made a final decision, said the person familiar with Emanuel's thinking, who spoke on condition of anonymity for that reason. The dominant factor at this point is the impact the move and the campaign would have on Emanuel's wife and three young children, who live with him in Washington, the source said.
Almost all the news services are reporting the same thing, and when that happens odds are it’s going to come to fruition. Hopefully the new COS won’t be Rahm 2.0, but rather someone who stands by the principals of their party.