Coffee and the Papers

** There are some interesting political predictions for various and sundry Nevada 2012 races in the Las Vegas Sun.  Question: Will Rep. Shelley Berkley (D-NV1) be able to pin the Wall Street Warrior label on anointed Senator Dean Heller?  Heller will continue to tout his vote against the TARP program as “evidence” of his “populism,” but the rest of his voting record is pure Wall Street.

** Willard Mitt Romney ekes out a slender win in the Iowa GOP caucus [WaPo] and the Nevada Progressive observes the Republican house divided against itself.  The Nixonian formula (Southern + evangelical + corporate money = victory) works best when the Southern + evangelical wing isn’t fighting with the corporate money wing.  Someone remind me why the Iowa GOP caucuses are worth so much air time?  Because Mike Huckabee won there in 2008?

** How can WMR hope to be a “man of the people?” By not disclosing his income? [Perrspectives] How can Rick Santorum out run his top ten outrageous campaign statements?  [Think Progress] My favorite is still, “Contraception is a license to do things.”

** No surprise, the incandescent light has gone out of Rep. Michele Bachmann’s presidential run.  [TPM] Then we have Rick Perry choking up in praise of Rick Perry [C&L] complete with video.

** Nevada now has online filing for financial disclosure forms.  [NNB] And, no, the process doesn’t require training in computer science or a degree in electrical engineering.  Following the prompts on the screen does nicely.  Score a win for Nevada Secretary of State Ross Miller on this one.

** Understatement of the Week: “There is a lot of frustration out there and more than a little hostility toward our industry.”  Jamie Dimon, CEO JPMorganChase. [Bloomberg] Yah think?  The “Jamie Deal,” or how to get Bear Stearns for $10/share [NYMag]  is still within living memory.  So are the machinations of AIG, Lehman Brothers, Bank of America, Goldman Sachs, et. al.  And then there’s the branch of BoA which wouldn’t allow a bride to deposit a check. [BusInsider]

** President Obama announced his intention to use a recess appointment to fill the directorship of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau [Reuters] a nomination Senator Dean Heller (R-NV) refused to support.  [roll call 223]

“…Republicans won’t allow that because they disapprove of the existence of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. The agency is already part of federal law, but GOP senators have said they will refuse to allow the agency to function or do any work unless Democrats agree to weaken the CFPB’s powers and lessen consumer protections.”  [WashingtonMonthly]

** Recommended reading:  An interview with the last survivor of the Rosewood (FL) massacre of 1923.   [The Grio]

“A lot of people had to get out of Rosewood that night. Mortin and her aunt Polly, Sam Carter’s mother, were fortunate. They made it to the train depot from which they escaped to Chiefland about twenty miles away. Many others spent several freezing nights hiding in the dank woods trying to avoid the mobs.”

** In case you missed it: “Weakening government oversight results in workers being hurt, not hired.”  [PLAN] The Bureau of Labor Statistics confirms: Only 0.3% of layoffs in 2010 were the result of government regulations [BLS pdf] The rest were seasonal, production specific, related to financial issues, organizational changes, or The Big One — Demand.

** Nifty Graphic — too large to insert here — on the GOP candidates’ tax proposals.   No surprise, 6 out of 7 call for repealing the estate tax, or the Paris Hilton Legacy Protection Act.  Romney would lower corporate taxes by 25%.  5 out of 7 would cut capital gains taxes.  7 out of 7 are members of the 1%.  [via Angry Bear]

** Fact Checking: No, Representative McKeon (R-CA), scheduled budget cuts do not impinge on defense spending more than non-defense spending. [Off the Charts]

** It takes several clicks to get to this report from Pew Trusts (pdf) “Downward Mobility From the Middle Class: Waking Up From the American Dream,” so here’s the quick link.   Recommended reading for 2012.  The report is part of the Economic Mobility Project.

** It also takes two clicks to get to the Treasury Department’s initiative on housing finance reform.  However, the search is worth the information in the report (pdf).

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