Mon, 25 February 2013
It's Monday of the last week left before sequestration kicks in. Congress has nothing on the schedule about it, but that doesn't always mean they aren't working on things in the background. Only this time, there's a significant part of the Congress dedicated to the proposition that nothing ought to be done, not to mention that the traditional media's pundits often define political bravery (or "Seriousness") in terms of your willingness to do the things people very clearly don't want done. Greg Dworkin talked with us about how different the Senate and House Republicans are in their approaches to crises like the sequester, and how David Brooks was finally called to account by others among the punditariat for continuing to blindly insist that both sides were refusing compromise. He also told us about the new group, United Physicians of Newtown, pushing to restore the ability of government agencies to collect public health data related to guns and gun violence, a reexamination of cultural norms relating to the same, a renewed emphasis on access to mental health care, and endorsing gun safety measures. Afterwards: we read through a fun post on language manipulation from Daily Kos community member jurassicpork, noted the interesting data gathered by the state of Minnesota on gun usage by its concealed carry permit holders, referred to a recent report showing that tax treatment of capital gains is the single biggest contributor to growing income inequality, and rounded up news related to the last-minute sequester scramble.