EAT THE RICH!: “What is it that has the Davos set so freaked out these days? I'm not talking about Wall Street Journal editorials decrying the evils of class warfare. That's pro forma stuff, not to be taken seriously. I'm talking about the fact that an awful lot of people claim that rich people are really and truly feeling besieged. It's not an act and it's not just paranoia—they're even seeking therapy to deal with it. As Ben White puts it today, ‘Economists, advisers to the wealthy and the wealthy themselves describe a deep-seated anxiety that the national — and even global — mood is turning against the super-rich in ways that ultimately could prove dangerous and hard to control.’ But why? The rich have done pretty well lately—certainly a helluva lot better than the working class. So what's the problem? Do they genuinely believe that their wealth might be confiscated in the near future? That's hard to credit. Eliminating the carried interest loophole or increasing top marginal rates by a few points just doesn't have that big an effect, and even the most paranoid rich folks can't believe there's much more than that on the horizon. So what is it?” (via Mother Jones)
TOO MANY FLORENCE NIGHTINGALES, NOT ENOUGH ROBIN HOODS:
LET’S ALL REMEMBER THE POTENTIAL FOR BLOODSHED AND ALMOST CERTAIN BIGOTRY IN SOCHI IN THE COMING WEEKS. HEY, AT LEAST MAYOR BUDDY DYER GIVES A DAMN: “The letter, sent ahead of next month's start of the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, was cosigned by Marks, Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer and St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman, who called on Russia to repeal its ‘anti-gay’ law. All three cities have sister cities in Russia; Tallahassee has a sister-city relationship with Krasnodar. ‘As mayors of Florida cities with Russian sister city counterparts, we are writing to address a matter of great importance that affects the lives of millions of Americans and Russians alike,’ the letter states. ‘In June 2013 you signed into law a measure that enforces a ban upon homosexual ‘propaganda’ in Russia. Thus it appears that citizens and visitors to Russia that identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgendered (LGBT) will be subject to discrimination, fines and potential incarceration.’" (via Tallahassee Democrat)
NO, REPUBLICANS DON’T LIKE TALKING TO THE PRESS – NOT AS MUCH AS THEY LIKE THROWING THEM OFF OF BALCONIES, ANYWAY: “When Republicans decided to take their annual retreat to Cambridge, Md., they weren’t just retreating from Washington, D.C. — they were retreating from the Washington press corps as well. Sequestered in a hotel restaurant called the Blue Point, the press looks poised to enjoy limited access to members as the GOP takes up major policy proposals that could shape Congress and elections for years to come. As Thursday morning began, a Capitol police officer warned members of the press that if they went near the hotel where Republicans were meeting, they could have their press credentials revoked for the remainder of the retreat. Instead of talking to members and recording organic reactions to the meetings, reporters were expected to sit in a detached restaurant about 400 yards away from the hotel where Republicans were meeting and were forced to rely on Capitol police to bring GOP leadership and select members to them for occasional press conferences. The strategy reduces the chances that members such as Rep. Steve King of Iowa will air his grievances with the GOP immigration plan before leadership can put a lid on him, and it means the press, assembled from various Capitol Hill and national publications, will likely report similar stories after covering the same press conferences and hearing from the same members. (via Roll Call)
GO AWAY. PLEASE, PLEASE GO AWAY. ALSO, “EVEN BLACK PEOPLE?”: “Now's your chance to kick George Zimmerman's ass with zero legal repercussions -- he just agreed to a celebrity boxing match ... and he says he'll fight ANYONE ... even black people. Celebrity boxing promoter Damon Feldman threw down the challenge, offering George money to step in the ring. Now here's the kicker ... the opponent has NOT been selected. We're told George is open to fighting a black person, but the promoter is not discriminating, telling us "We're not looking at it as a race thing ... We haven't discussed purple, yellow, white, black." Lately George has been more interested in boxing than guns ... regularly training in the ring. As for George's cut from the fight, we're told he's donating the money to charity. If you'd like to throw your hat in the ring for the March 1 match, email firstname.lastname@example.org.” (via TMZ)
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