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Friday, February 14, 2014

Good Morning, News!

Posted by Denis C. Theriault on Fri, Feb 14, 2014 at 9:30 AM

Holy poops, you guys! Coming right after the announcement of a Comcast-Time Warner union that will almost certainly be TERRIBLE for consumers, another mega-merger will tear out the living, beating heart of American business as we know it. Take a breath, because we just found out that old-man mall clothing store Jos. A. Bank is going to snatch Eddie Bauer right from the grasp of an expectant Men's Wearhouse.

A few cosmetic changes is apparently all it takes to skirt New York state's much-hyped ban on assault rifles. The gun lobby is righteously sneering right now.

Virginia has become the latest state—and first in the tolerant South!—to see a judge strongly toss out a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage. It's a big step, yes. But like every other court case on marriage equality, it's still a waiting game. Marriages are on hold pending a hearing in a federal appellate court.

Remember how Uruguay planted its flag as the first country in the world to fully legalize pot? Uruguay's 78-year-old ex-guerrilla prez wants to remind everyone that legalization would mean a lot more if countries like the United States got on board.

Widespread protests in Venezuela—where people are mad about the lousy economy, crime, and political repression—could be helping the government instead of hurting it. The chaos is playing right into the hands of militia groups formed years ago as a bulwark against dissent.

Maybe it's not such a good idea to allow our presidents—in an era when diplomacy is allegedly cheaper and saner than war—to reward profligate campaign donors by naming them ambassadors. The current bunch has not distinguished itself.

John Kerry is trying to convince himself that China really means it when it says it will help put some pressure, this time, on North Korea to give up its nuclear arsenal.

California's drought could cost something like $11 billion in lost agricultural revenue—a devastating blow to one of America's most important farming regions, but particularly for the low-income and seasonal workers who barely scrape by in good times.

Fresh from calling progressives "Nazis," aggrieved 82-year-old venture capitalist Tom Perkins suggests we make de jure something in American government that has long been de facto: "What I really think is, it should be like a corporation. You pay a million dollars in taxes, you get a million votes. How's that?"

HERE'S WHAT YOUR SERVER WILL SEE WHILE WATCHING YOU AND YOUR "VALENTINE" DURING DINNER OUT TONIGHT. SO WE'RE CLEAR.

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