Thursday, February 22News That Matters

Politics

NRA Dana Loesch and Marco Rubio show that there are genuine 'insane monsters'

NRA Dana Loesch and Marco Rubio show that there are genuine 'insane monsters'

Politics
On Wednesday night CNN had a Townhall-style debate in which NRA spokesperson Dana Loesch appeared to scowl at grieving parents and prove once and for all that the organization she represented was exactly as awful as it seems. No matter what approach was made, no matter how much either logic or grief was brought to bear, Loesch refused to consider anything that would put any limits on the sale of any weapons system whatsoever. Loesch’s guns-at-any-cost whoppers hit a nadir when she responded to a comment that the Second Amendment was written at a time when firearms consisted of muskets by claiming that the Revolutionary War period was far more advanced than people believe: “At the time there were fully-automatic firearms that were available, the Belton gun and the Puckle gun.” It’s a c
House Republican wants answers about Scott Pruitt’s travel habits

House Republican wants answers about Scott Pruitt’s travel habits

Politics
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Scott Pruitt’s expensive first class travel isn’t just raising objections from environmentalists and Democratic legislators — Republican House Oversight Committee Chairman Trey Gowdy (R-SC) also wants answers. In a letter sent to Pruitt on Wednesday, Gowdy asked for information on all flights that Pruitt took in the last year, including whether an individual waiver was obtained in order to purchase a first or business class ticket. Gowdy also reminded Pruitt that “blanket waivers” for first class travel are prohibited by government regulations, which require federal employees to travel by coach except in extraordinary circumstances. A report from the Washington Post revealed that in the span of several weeks
Set aside how stupid it is for a minute. How much would arming teachers cost?

Set aside how stupid it is for a minute. How much would arming teachers cost?

Politics
Set aside all the ways arming teachers is stupid. Let’s talk about something Donald Trump at least pretends to be able to understand (even if that too is debatable): money. The Washington Post’s Philip Bump estimates the cost of arming teachers, starting with Trump’s goal of 20 percent of teachers, something he notes would mean that “We’d essentially be adding 50 percent to the size of the military by mandating that three-quarters of a million people be trained and prepared to take up arms to defend civilians.” A bare minimum training would run $100 per teacher, for a total of $71.8 million. But bare minimum training is not what Trump says he’s talking about. A more extensive training would total $718 million. Trump has mentioned people who are already trained, like those with military ex
Dana Loesch deceives shooting survivors about the NRA’s real positions

Dana Loesch deceives shooting survivors about the NRA’s real positions

Politics
If you just listened to what National Rifle Association national spokesperson Dana Loesch said on Wednesday’s CNN Town Hall on gun violence, you might think that the NRA’s positions on background checks and bump stocks are quite reasonable. The Tea Party co-founder and conservative radio host turned NRA flak responded to questions from survivors of last week’s horrific Parkland school shooting by suggesting that her organization backs strengthened background checks, ensuring that mental health data is included in the National Instant Criminal Background Check System, and action to ban bump stocks that effectively turn semiautomatic guns into automatic rifles. “This individual was nuts,” Loesch explained, “And I, nor the millions of people that I represen
Trump: It's 'fake news' that I want to arm teachers. But for real, let's arm teachers.

Trump: It's 'fake news' that I want to arm teachers. But for real, let's arm teachers.

Politics
Donald Trump’s big listening-session suggestion of arming teachers met with enough criticism that he decided the problem was people not understanding what he had said and that if he just explained it again, the world would see its brilliance. So he took to the Twitter, of course: I never said “give teachers guns” like was stated on Fake News @CNN & @NBC. What I said was to look at the possibility of giving “concealed guns to gun adept teachers with military or special training experience - only the best. 20% of teachers, a lot, would now be able to I never said give teachers guns! I said give 20 percent of teachers guns. Big difference! This important policy proposal follows Trump’s other important gun policy proposals like the rollback of an Obama-era rule making it more difficult
In the same tweet, Trump says he does and doesn’t want to arm teachers with guns

In the same tweet, Trump says he does and doesn’t want to arm teachers with guns

Politics
On Thursday morning, President Donald Trump sent out a series of tweets attempting to defend a point raised in another tweet from 2016 that suggested he was not in favor of arming teachers as a solution to school shootings. Crooked Hillary said that I want guns brought into the school classroom. Wrong! — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 22, 2016 In his Thursday morning tweets, however, Trump still proposed arming teachers, with the caveat that they must be “adept” and have “military or training experience.” I never said “give teachers guns” like was stated on Fake News @CNN & @NBC. What I said was to look at the possibility of giving “concealed guns to gun adept teachers with military or special training experience – only the best. 20% of t
Yale University makes a profit off Puerto Rican debt as activists call for accountability

Yale University makes a profit off Puerto Rican debt as activists call for accountability

Politics
In the wake of a years-long economic crisis in Puerto Rico, wealthy individuals and businesses have profited from the island’s debt and the crushing poverty of its people. But did you know that universities have also cashed in as well? At least we know for sure that one prominent university has. A group of activists have been organizing at Yale University to hold the institution accountable for the Puerto Rican bonds it has in its investment portfolio. They released findings on Tuesday calling for the university to be transparent about its holdings related to Puerto Rican debt, divest from them completely and to take up the cause of economic justice on the island.  A coalition of activists uncovered late last year that Yale University’s $27.2 billion endowment had a direct investment in