** University of Nevada regent Dan Klaisch reviews the new “funding model” for higher education in the state, and for those who would like to move further into the weeds, there’s the MGT report (pdf) from May 2011, and the March 23rd “New Model for Funding” (pdf).
** Senate candidate Rep. Shelley Berkley (D-NV1) visited a veterans cemetery in Nye County and spoke of her commitment to veterans in terms of health care, jobs, and veterans’ services. [PVT] Berkley was a supporter of the New GI Bill, which provides education and housing benefits for veterans. Berkley was one of the co-sponsors of H.R. 2131, the New GI Bill of Rights for the 21st Century, in the 109th Congress. Former Congressman Dean Heller (R-NV2) was not a supporter of the bill, saying only that he was “constantly evaluating it,” in 2008. [LVSun] Republicans argued that incentives for education might cause ‘recruiting problems,’ and that the cost was too high.
** What War on Women? Oh, do you mean the one in which the Tennessee Senate has just approved an abstinence bill that warns against “gateway sexual activity,” without actually defining what that might mean? [Tennessean] Or could we be discussing the revised anti-contraception bill that will re-emerge in the Arizona legislature which would allow employers to opt out of health care plan coverage of contraceptive services? [AZCentral] And, I guess we’re not supposed to use the phrase “War on Women” because that denigrates the service of combat veterans (according to the RNC) but a “war on drugs” is OK? All right, let’s not call it a War, instead let’s call it a continuous, organized, and well funded assault on women, their health care needs, and their individual freedom to determine the course of their lives? Is that better?
** Then there’s that War On Caterpillars — the real one the GOP has been waging while it tries to get the EPA to reduce restrictions on the use of pesticides. [Atlantic]
** Does Rep. Paul Ryan actually know how the Pentagon budget is compiled? There seems to be some doubt. [Slate]
** Bill Moyers warns us that Big Banks are shoveling money at members of Congress in order to roll back the reforms designed to rein in the Wall Street Casino and protect our savings. [Salon] What are some of the more repugnant talking points from the Financialists? See Salon/Alternet article.
** The national unemployment rate edged down to 8.2%. “Nonfarm payroll employment rose by 120,000 in March, and the unemployment rate was little changed at 8.2 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Employment rose in manufacturing, food services and drinking places, and health care, but was down in retail trade.” [DoL] Employment rising in manufacturing is indeed good news, the decline in retail jobs means consumers (workers) could use some more spending money? As one think tank put it: “The economy surely could use some fuel injection from either monetary policy, fiscal policy, or both, but that’s not in the cards — and that’s a bad sign for job growth and for boosting people’s confidence that they can find a job.” Or, how about some INFRASTRUCTURE SPENDING?
Chart of the Day: What would the Ryan Budget do for you? Ans: Not much unless you are in the top 1% of American Income Earners