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March 11, 2014
nbcnews:

CIA accused of spying on Senate Intel Committee, breaking law
(Photo: Senate Television via AP)
The head of the Senate Intelligence Committee said Tuesday that the CIA searched the panel’s computers and that the search may have violated the Constitution.
Continue reading

Sen. Dianne Feinstein: "I have grave concerns that the CIA’s search may well have violated the separation of powers principles embodied by the United States Constitution, including the speech and debate clause. It may have undermined the Constitutional framework essential to effective congressional oversight of intelligence activity or any other government function."

nbcnews:

CIA accused of spying on Senate Intel Committee, breaking law

(Photo: Senate Television via AP)

The head of the Senate Intelligence Committee said Tuesday that the CIA searched the panel’s computers and that the search may have violated the Constitution.

Continue reading

Sen. Dianne Feinstein: "I have grave concerns that the CIA’s search may well have violated the separation of powers principles embodied by the United States Constitution, including the speech and debate clause. It may have undermined the Constitutional framework essential to effective congressional oversight of intelligence activity or any other government function."

10:09 // 1 month ago
January 6, 2014
breakingnews:

US Senate confirms Yellen as chair of Federal Reserve
New York Times: The U.S. Senate confirmed Janet Yellen as chairwoman of the Federal Reserve. She is the first woman to hold the position in the central bank’s 100-year history.

As a Fed official, Ms. Yellen, 67, has been an influential proponent of the Fed’s extraordinary measures to revive the economy, even though interest rates are already close to zero. But as chairwoman, Ms. Yellen’s arduous task will be to oversee the gradual unwinding of those extraordinary measures, despite an uncomfortably high unemployment rate of 7 percent and subdued inflation.
During the confirmation process, senators from both sides of the aisle criticized the Fed for not doing enough to aid the economy and help middle-class Americans, and for trying to do too much, thus distorting the markets and risking new bubbles. …
Despite those objections, Ms. Yellen won confirmation easily. Ms. Yellen will be the first Democratic nominee to run the Fed since President Jimmy Carter named Paul Volcker as chairman in 1979.

Photo: Janet L. Yellen, attending ceremonies marking the Federal Reserve’s centennial in December. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

An important position of power, now held by a woman.

breakingnews:

US Senate confirms Yellen as chair of Federal Reserve

New York TimesThe U.S. Senate confirmed Janet Yellen as chairwoman of the Federal Reserve. She is the first woman to hold the position in the central bank’s 100-year history.

As a Fed official, Ms. Yellen, 67, has been an influential proponent of the Fed’s extraordinary measures to revive the economy, even though interest rates are already close to zero. But as chairwoman, Ms. Yellen’s arduous task will be to oversee the gradual unwinding of those extraordinary measures, despite an uncomfortably high unemployment rate of 7 percent and subdued inflation.

During the confirmation process, senators from both sides of the aisle criticized the Fed for not doing enough to aid the economy and help middle-class Americans, and for trying to do too much, thus distorting the markets and risking new bubbles. …

Despite those objections, Ms. Yellen won confirmation easily. Ms. Yellen will be the first Democratic nominee to run the Fed since President Jimmy Carter named Paul Volcker as chairman in 1979.

Photo: Janet L. Yellen, attending ceremonies marking the Federal Reserve’s centennial in December. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

An important position of power, now held by a woman.

19:21 // 3 months ago
7:19 // 3 months ago
December 12, 2013

Stuff you may have missed: December 12, 2013

In a stunning reveal, the Associated Press reported that long-detained American Robert Levinson, who has been held in Iran for the past seven years, is actually a CIA agent on a unapproved mission. Here’s why the AP finally published the story.

In Bangladesh, Abdul Qader Mulla, a leader involved in the 1971 war for independence, was executed for crimes against humanity. He was initially sentenced to life in prison, but then a popular protest broke out.

Democrats in the Senate are currently punishing Republicans for that whole not-approving-judicial-nominees thing by holding votes during all hours of the day.

The “affluenza” defense apparently worked well enough for a Texas teen that he skipped jail time for a fatal DUI crash. But is “affluenza” actually a thing?

Don’t feel bad, producers of “The Butler.” The Golden Globes gets it wrong—often.

21:57 // 4 months ago
November 24, 2013

Watch out - Millennials to take on U.S. politics

  • 2035 could be the year when Millennials take over the United States Congress, give or take a few years, as according to a study and a mathematical 30-44-53 rule. The rule states that a majority will only reach once the oldest elected office of a generation hits the age of 53. And for the Senate, Millennials will conquer it in the years of 2036 to 2044 source
14:20 // 4 months ago
November 21, 2013

Apparently the right-wing media doesn’t hate filibusters anymore…

mediamattersforamerica:

Because they certainly did when Bush was president, and even pushed for the “nuclear option.” From 2005: 

  • Sean Hannity: “I Believe It’s Unconstitutional To Filibuster.”
  • Rush Limbaugh: “The Constitution Says Nothing About This. The Constitution Says Simple Majority, 51 Votes.”
  • Wall Street Journal: Using Nuclear Option Is Better Than Letting “A Willful Minority Deny The President’s Nominees A Vote On The Senate Floor.”
  • National Review editor Rich Lowry: Judicial Filibusters Are “A Perversion” Of Traditional Checks And Balances And Should Be Eliminated “Through The So-Called Nuclear Option.” 
  • Karl Rove: “We Believe That Fairness Means That [Nominees] Deserve An Up-Or-Down Vote.”
  • Pat Robertson: “These Filibusters Have Been Unconstitutional. And The Senate, I Just Think The Majority Should Say, `Look, We Want An Up And Down Vote.’” 

Let’s all agree that it just needed to die.

(via spytap)

20:23 // 4 months ago
The Senate is a living thing, and to survive it must change, as it has over the history of this great country.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, on dropping the nuclear option for executive branch appointees. Now the chamber can approve appointees with a simple up-down majority. Should ease up the pace a little.
12:57 // 4 months ago
November 19, 2013
Momentum isn’t going in his favor, but that hasn’t stopped Sen. Max Baucus (D-MT), the chair of the Senate Finance Committee, from proposing a bunch of ideas for reforming the tax code. “Once we get the ball rolling, many are going to see, ‘Hey, maybe there’s something to this. Maybe there’s an opportunity there to help the country create jobs and therefore an opportunity for political benefit here,’ ” he said about his various proposals. “Because the goal here is to create jobs.”

Momentum isn’t going in his favor, but that hasn’t stopped Sen. Max Baucus (D-MT), the chair of the Senate Finance Committee, from proposing a bunch of ideas for reforming the tax code. “Once we get the ball rolling, many are going to see, ‘Hey, maybe there’s something to this. Maybe there’s an opportunity there to help the country create jobs and therefore an opportunity for political benefit here,’ ” he said about his various proposals. “Because the goal here is to create jobs.”

20:55 // 4 months ago
November 18, 2013
fred-wilson:

This current price spike is making last spring’s look like a blip

FYI: A United States Senate panel is holding a hearing on bitcoin today.

fred-wilson:

This current price spike is making last spring’s look like a blip

FYI: A United States Senate panel is holding a hearing on bitcoin today.

10:40 // 4 months ago
October 14, 2013
I’m very optimistic that we will reach an agreement that’s reasonable in nature this week to reopen the government, pay the nation’s bills, and begin long-term negotiation to put our country on sound fiscal footing.
U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid says Monday on talks to solve the government shutdown and debt ceiling crisis in Washington D.C. 
18:20 // 6 months ago