Blogs | Mother Jones Mother Jones logo en Anti-Abortion Colorado Republican Candidate Tries to Pass Himself Off As Pro-Choice <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><body><p>Bob Beauprez, the <a href="" target="_blank">Republican candidate for governor of Colorado</a>, just joined a growing club of GOP politicians&mdash;including <a href="" target="_blank">Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker</a> and <a href="" target="_blank">Senate hopeful Scott Brown of New Hampshire</a>&mdash;who have grossly misrepresented their stance on women's reproductive rights.</p> <p>In <a href="" target="_blank">an interview aired Wednesday</a> on Colorado Public Radio, Beauprez, a former congressman, struck a decidedly pro-choice note when asked about abortion and birth control. He said he would not stand in the way of women having access to abortions, nor would he interfere with women choosing what kind of birth control to use. "I respect people's opinion, women's right to that choice," he said. He later added, "I don't want to run somebody else's family and make decisions for their family, their life; I want them to have the opportunity and the freedom to do that themselves."</p> <p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src=";color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false" width="100%"></iframe></p> <p>Here's the full exchange (listen to the audio above):</p> <blockquote> <p><strong>CPR:</strong> On women's reproductive health, as governor would you be committed to your current stated position that while you're personally against abortions, you won't stand in the way of people having access to them or letting women choose their preferred method of birth control?</p> <p><strong>Bob Beauprez:</strong> That's correct. I respect people's opinion, women's right to that choice. I know what the law is. And my job is to enforce the law. The question of birth control has come up and let me be real clear&hellip;I think women ought to have the choice of whether to use birth control or not. I think women ought to have the choice of what type of birth control to use. I just don't think taxpayers need to be paying for it.</p> <p>I respect people's right to choose. I live my life the way I personally choose, but I'm not going to interfere with somebody else's. The job of a governor is less to govern the people, and more to govern the government. I don't want to make somebody else's decision, but I want them to have every opportunity to make their own. I don't want to run somebody else's family and make decisions for their family, their life; I want them to have the opportunity and the freedom to do that themselves. That's the kind of governor I'll be.</p> </blockquote> <p><em>Right to that choice</em>&hellip;<em>have the choice</em>&hellip;<em>right to choose</em>&hellip;<em>the way I choose</em>: Beauprez almost sounds like a Planned Parenthood activist. But his legislative record and past statements couldn't be more at odds with his seemingly pro-choice comments.</p> <p>In 2005, then-Rep. Beauprez <a href="" target="_blank">cosponsored</a> the Right to Life Act, a measure that guaranteed "equal protection for the right to life of each born and pre-born human person." The bill defined life beginning with "the moment of fertilization," and could severely restrict abortions. In Colorado Right-to-Life's 2006 voter guide, he <a href="">said</a> he supported a constitutional amendment to "restore full protection to pre-born human beings." That same year, he <a href="">asserted</a>&mdash;incorrectly&mdash;that the abortion rate for black women was an "appalling" 70 percent. (The <a href="" target="_blank">actual rate</a> at the time, according to the Guttmacher Institute, was 49 per 1,000&mdash;or 4.9 percent.) And in 2013, in <a href="" target="_blank">a column on</a>, he urged all Americans to reconcile the "tragedies" of abortions just as they reconciled the <a href="" target="_blank">mass shootings</a> in Aurora, Colorado, and Newtown, Connecticut.</p> <p>As a gubernatorial candidate, Beauprez has not wavered from his decidedly anti-abortion position.&nbsp;He <a href="">continues to say</a> that he opposes all forms of abortion, even in cases of rape and incest unless the mother's life is at risk. He <a href="">bragged</a> to an interviewer in March about his "100 percent pro-life voting record." He also <a href="">claims</a> that an IUD is an abortifacient, not contraception. Beauprez has not said how he'd act on these beliefs, though he <a href="" target="_blank">says he would eliminate</a> all state funding for Planned Parenthood.</p> <p>But anyone listening to his recent Colorado Public Radio interview might think that Beauprez was a supporter of a woman's right to choose, just as Scott Walker and Scott Brown sought to imply in their own sneaky ads on the issue. Pro-choice women are a key voting bloc that Beauprez needs to win&mdash;and he appears willing to distort his record to get their votes.</p></body></html> MoJo Elections Health Care Reproductive Rights Top Stories Fri, 24 Oct 2014 10:00:11 +0000 Andy Kroll 263141 at Man Tells Joke <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><body><p><a href="" target="_blank">Ebola in NYC!</a> Chaos! Doom! Hysteria! Hashtags!</p> <p>Late Thursday, New York City officials <a href="" target="_blank">confirmed</a> that a doctor recently returned to the city from treating Ebola patients in West Africa has tested positive for the virus. The internet, a place where serious things are not taken seriously and unserious things are taken very seriously, was a bit confused about how to react. On the one hand, panic! On the other hand, #ironic #detachment!</p> <p>Into this whirlwind jumped Nick Muzin, Sen. Ted Cruz's deputy chief of staff:</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p>"Senior Advisor &amp; Dep. Chief <a href="">@SenTedCruz</a>. Fmr. Director of Coalitions for <a href="">@HouseGOP</a>" <a href=""></a></p> &mdash; Adam Weinstein (@AdamWeinstein) <a href="">October 24, 2014</a></blockquote> <script async src="//" charset="utf-8"></script><p>The internet was unsure if this not very funny joke was a joke or not and ran with it as though it were serious because the truth is conservatives do seem to blame quite a lot on Obamacare, but then the tweet was deleted and followed up with:</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p>Earlier tweet was a bad joke, my sarcasm did not translate well online. Deleted.</p> &mdash; Nick Muzin (@nickmuzin) <a href="">October 24, 2014</a></blockquote> <p><script async src="//" charset="utf-8"></script></p> <p>I would personally like the record to reflect that though I wasn't sure if it was a joke and didn't find it particularly funny, I'd die for Nick Muzin's right to tweet his joke.</p> <p>Have a great night.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="354" src="//" width="630"></iframe></p></body></html> Contributor Ebola Fri, 24 Oct 2014 02:34:55 +0000 Ben Dreyfuss 263156 at New York City Doctor Tests Positive for Ebola <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><body><p><em>The New York Times </em>reports Craig Spencer, a Doctors Without Borders physician who had recently been to West Africa to help treat Ebola patients, has tested <a href="" target="_blank">positive for the disease</a>. Spencer is the first person in New York to be diagnosed.</p> <p>As Spencer's identity had been confirmed late Thursday afternoon, it became known he had been <a href="" target="_blank">bowling in Brooklyn</a> on Wednesday, traveling via an Uber ride to and from Manhattan.</p> <p>"Ebola is very difficult to contract, being on the same subway car or living near someone with Ebola does not put someone at risk," de Blasio told reporters at a news conference Thursday evening.</p> <p>Since coming back to the United States on October 14th, the city's health commissioner, Dr. Mary Bassett, confirmed Spencer used the subway's A, 1, and L lines and bowled at <a href="" target="_blank">The Gutter in Williamsburg</a>. Bassett said the city has been preparing for the possibility of an outbreak for the past few weeks, with Cuomo emphasizing healthcare workers have been well-trained for such an event.</p> <p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="354" src="//" width="630"></iframe></p> <p><span style="font-family: Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; line-height: 2em;">Earlier Thursday, Spencer was taken to Bellevue Hospital in Manhattan after suffering from Ebola-like symptoms, including a 103-degree fever and nausea.</span></p> <p>The New York City Health Department released a statement indicating Spencer had returned to the United States<a href="" target="_blank"> within the past 21 days. </a></p> <blockquote> <p class="rteindent1"><span class="bodytext">The patient was transported by a specially trained HAZ TAC unit wearing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).&nbsp; After consulting with the hospital and the CDC, DOHMH has decided to conduct a test for the Ebola virus because of this patient&rsquo;s recent travel history, pattern of symptoms, and past work. DOHMH and HHC are also evaluating the patient for other causes of illness, as these symptoms can also be consistent with salmonella, malaria, or the stomach flu.</span></p> </blockquote> <p><em>The New York Post</em> first identified <a href="" target="_blank">Spencer,</a> who returned from <a href="" target="_blank">Guinea on October 14</a> and reported his fever this morning.</p> <p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="354" src="//" width="630"></iframe></p> <p><em>CNN</em> producer Vaughn Sterling tweeted the following:</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p>BREAKING: Possible NYC <a href="">#Ebola</a> didn't self-quarantine; took an &uuml;ber to Williamsburg bowling alley yesterday; now has fever/pain/nausea</p> &mdash; Vaughn Sterling (@vplus) <a href="">October 23, 2014</a></blockquote> <script async src="//" charset="utf-8"></script><p><em>This post has been updated throughout. </em></p></body></html> MoJo Health Ebola Thu, 23 Oct 2014 20:38:43 +0000 Inae Oh 263131 at Students at a Nebraska High School Can Now Pose With Guns in Their Senior Portraits <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><body><p>Seniors at Broken Bow High School in Nebraska have been granted their God-given right to <a href="" target="_blank">pose</a> with guns for their upcoming senior portraits, just as long as the photos are taken off campus and done "tastefully."</p> <p>&ldquo;The board, I believe, felt they wanted to give students who are involved in those kinds of things the opportunity to take a senior picture with their hobby, with their sport, just like anybody with any other hobby or sport,&rdquo; Superintendent Mark Sievering explained to local paper, the <em><a href="" target="_blank">Omaha World-Herald. </a></em></p> <p>One would think such a bizarre proposal would prompt some level of debate, a modicum of sane opposition! After all, we're talking about mere teenagers eerily striking poses with weapons in their adolescent hands. Alas, the idea was met with a unanimous yes by all members of the Broken Bow school board.</p> <p>&ldquo;For me as a sportsman, I think the policy&rsquo;s important because it allows those kids who are doing those things a chance to demonstrate what they&rsquo;re doing and to celebrate that. I think that&rsquo;s important and fair in our country," board member Matthew Haumont said.</p> <p>As for the "tasteful" requirement, that means classy poses only folks: no photos with weapons pointed at the camera, no brandishing of weapons, and no "scantily clad girls."</p> <p>&nbsp;</p></body></html> MoJo Guns Thu, 23 Oct 2014 18:14:30 +0000 Inae Oh 263116 at Elizabeth Warren's Latest Comment About Running For President Is the Most Cryptic Yet <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><body><p>With 106 weeks until the next presidential election, speculating about a potential Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) candidacy is like going on a long car ride with a six-year-old. "Are you running?" <em>No</em>. "How about now?" <em>No</em>. "Now?" <em>No</em>. "Now?" <em>No</em>. "What about now?" <em>No</em>. "Are you running?" <em>No</em>. "Are you running?" [<em>exasperated sigh]</em> "Aha!"</p> <p>But Warren does continue to do the things people who are considering a run for president tend to do&mdash;<a href="" target="_blank">flying to Iowa</a> to rally the troops on behalf of Rep. Bruce Braley, for instance, and going on tour to promote a <a href="" target="_blank">campaign-style book</a>. Her latest venture, a sit-down interview in the next issue of <a href="" target="_blank"><em>People</em> magazine</a>, isn't going to do much to quiet the speculation, even as she once more downplayed the prospect of a run:</p> <blockquote> <p>[S]upporters are already lining up to back an "Elizabeth Warren for President" campaign in 2016. But is the freshman senator from Massachusetts herself on board with a run for the White House? Warren wrinkles her nose.</p> <p>"I don't think so," she tells PEOPLE in an interview conducted at Warren's Cambridge, Massachusetts, home for this week's issue. "If there's any lesson I've learned in the last five years, it's don't be so sure about what lies ahead. There are amazing doors that could open."</p> <p>She just doesn't see the door of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue being one of them. Not yet, anyway. "Right now," Warren says, "I'm focused on figuring out what else I can do from this spot" in the U.S. Senate.</p> </blockquote> <p>"Amazing doors"; "I don't think"; "right now"&mdash;<em>what does it all mean</em>? Warren's not really saying anything we haven't heard from her before. But after then-Sen. Barack Obama's furious denials about running for president eight years ago, no one's ready to take "no" for an answer. At least not yet, anyway.</p></body></html> MoJo 2016 Elections Elections Thu, 23 Oct 2014 17:59:20 +0000 Tim Murphy 263111 at Watching This Porcupine Taste a Pumpkin Is Why the World Is Going to Be Okay Today <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><body><p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="354" src="//" width="630"></iframe></p> <p>Imagine if we were all as happy as this adorable porcupine, enjoying the seasonal harvest with this much gusto. (You really need to wait until he takes his first bite&mdash;the sounds he makes are amazing). This video was posted to YouTube by <a href="" target="_blank">Zooiversity</a>, a traveling animal education company in Texas, last year, and appears to be enjoying an encore seasonal run this week, as the nation heads&nbsp;into full-on pumpkin madness. (H/t to the website <em>Unwindly</em>, <a href="">where I first saw it</a>).</p> <p>Teddy Bear, an 11-year-old male North American porcupine (<em>Erethizon dorsatum</em>), is something of a YouTube star at this point, it seems. <a href="" target="_blank">According to Zooiversity's website</a>, he's raked in 11.5 million views from 16 viral videos and enjoys a following from over 19,000 Facebook fans.&nbsp;</p> <p>He's even...a movie star. Yes. A movie star. According to Zooiversity, <a href="">Teddy gave voice to Sebastian the hedgehog in <em>The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey</em></a>. He's come a long way since his days as an abandoned newborn found by a rancher in West Texas.</p></body></html> Mixed Media Video Animals Thu, 23 Oct 2014 16:06:52 +0000 James West 263101 at Yet More Housekeeping <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><body><p>How much detail do you want about my medical woes? Well, I'm bored, so you're going to get more.</p> <p>By the time you read this, I should be sedated and ready for a something-plasty, a procedure that injects bone cement into my fractured L3 lumbar vertebra. In other words, I will become a low-grade Wolverine in one teeny-tiny part of my body. According to the doctors, the cement dries instantly and should relieve my back pain almost completely. It sounds too good to be true, and of course it's always possible that I have some other source of back pain in addition to the compression fracture. But this should help a lot.</p> <p>There is more to this story, and hopefully tomorrow will wrap everything up as all the rest of the test results come back. I'll keep you posted.</p> <p>On a related subject, I have to say that the Irvine Kaiser hospital is excellent. I have a very nice little single room with good visiting accommodations. It features all the usual annoyances of a hospital, some of which have made me grumpy, but everyone has been very nice and professional. They've made my stay about as nice as it could be under the circumstances.</p></body></html> Kevin Drum Thu, 23 Oct 2014 16:00:10 +0000 Kevin Drum 263091 at Canada's Coverage of the Ottawa Shootings Put American Cable News to Shame <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><body><p>The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation today gave a master class in calm, credible breaking-news reporting.</p> <div class="inline inline-right" style="display: table; width: 1%"><a href="" target="_blank"><img alt="Kevin Vickers" class="image" src="/files/kevinvickers-thumbnail.jpg"></a> <div class="caption"><strong>Also Read: <a href="" target="_blank">Kevin Vickers, Canada's Badass National Hero, Is a Portrait of Humility </a></strong></div> </div> <p>Anchored by the unflappable Peter Mansbridge, news of the <a href="" target="_blank">shootings in Ottawa</a> unfolded live on the CBC much like they do here in the United States: lots of sketchy details, conflicting reports, unreliable witnesses, and a thick fog of confusion. All of that was familiar. What was less familiar was how Mansbridge and his team managed that confusion, conveying a concise and fact-based version of fast-moving events to viewers across Canada and the world.</p> <p>This live bit of level-headed reporting by Mansbridge, from around 11:10 a.m. Wednesday, should be given to journalism students around the country. It basically contains everything you need to know about why CBC did its audience proud:</p> <blockquote> <p>MANSBRIDGE: And so, the situation is, as we say, tense and unclear. And it's on days like this&mdash;we keep reminding you of this and it's important&mdash;it's on days like this, where a story takes a number of different pathways, a number of changes occur, and often rumors start in a situation like this. We try to keep them out of our coverage, but when they come, sometimes from official sources, like members of Parliament, you tend to give them some credence. But you carefully weigh it with what we're also witnessing. It's clear that the situation is not over. It is clear the police are in an intense standby situation and continue to be on the lookout, and until somebody blows the all-clear on this we will continue to stay on top of it and watch as the events unfold.</p> </blockquote> <p>Watch below, courtesy of the CBC:</p> <p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="354" src="//" width="630"></iframe></p> <p>The broadcast was deliberative and deferential to the facts even when they were sparse. Exacting and painstaking, but never slow or boring, Mansbridge weighed the credibility of every detail, constantly framing and reframing what we knew and, most crucially, <em>how we knew it</em>. He literally <em>spoke</em> the news as it happened, using his experience not to opine nor fill the gaps in his knowledge, but to provide the necessary support for his team's reporting.</p> <p>Getting things wrong during fast-moving live coverage is, of course, common. Coverage of the Washington Navy Yard shooting last year got the details wrong early and often: It misstated the perpetrator's name, age, and how many guns he had. Following the Boston Marathon bombing in April 2013, there was false coverage about the identity of the bombers, and anonymous sources leading journalists to nonexistent bombs and arrests. <em>On the Media</em>'s handy <a href="" target="_blank">"breaking news consumer's handbook"</a> is a great roundup of the reporting errors that get repeated every time there is a mass shooting.</p> <p>No newscast, especially live news, is immune to mistakes, and during the initial haze of leads and counterleads, it's easy to point fingers. But for the six-some hours of CBC broadcasting I watched off-and-on (mostly on) today, I never once felt lost in the wall-to-wall speculation that has characterized so many recent breaking-news broadcasts in the United States.</p> <p>It seems like others on Twitter agree that CBC did pretty damn well today:</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p>Exactly right. <a href="">@cbcnews</a> and <a href="">@petermansbridge</a> covered today&rsquo;s awful events properly: calmly, carefully and accurately. <a href=""></a></p> &mdash; Mike Wickett (@mwickett) <a href="">October 22, 2014</a></blockquote> <script async src="//" charset="utf-8"></script><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p>CBC, by the way, has not gone to break in over two hours. Peter Mansbridge has barely exhaled. Grand work by our public broadcaster.</p> &mdash; Arash Madani (@ArashMadani) <a href="">October 22, 2014</a></blockquote> <script async src="//" charset="utf-8"></script><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p>.<a href="">@CBCNews</a> anchor <a href="">@petermansbridge</a> has been brilliant today, and US news could learn a lot: <a href=""></a> <a href=""></a></p> &mdash; Mark Joyella (@standupkid) <a href="">October 22, 2014</a></blockquote> <script async src="//" charset="utf-8"></script></body></html> Mixed Media Crime and Justice Media Top Stories Wed, 22 Oct 2014 21:28:39 +0000 James West 263076 at Map: The Most Popular NFL Teams Everywhere in America—According to Twitter <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><body><p>For now, even after all the concussions, the domestic violence, and the <a href="" target="_blank">still-horribly named</a> team from Washington, DC, Americans still love their pro football. Twitter took a stab at measuring <a href="" target="_blank">the popularity of every NFL franchise</a> by looking at the official Twitter handle for each team and then counting followers of those teams in each county. It's an imperfect measure, for sure, but it's a nifty interface and a lot of fun! Take a look:</p> <p><iframe src=";team=all" style="border:none;height:1100px;width:100%;"></iframe></p></body></html> MoJo Maps Sports Wed, 22 Oct 2014 19:39:59 +0000 AJ Vicens 263066 at Fox News Thinks Young Women Are Too Busy With Tinder to "Get" Voting <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><body><p>Fox News host Kimberly Guilfoyle, a woman, shared some advice for us <a href="" target="_blank">feeble-minded young ladies out here</a>: Let's not burden ourselves with voting! After all, we're far too busy swiping for a man on Tinder to cast an educated vote in the midterm elections, or any election for that matter.</p> <p>"It's the same reason why young women on juries are not a good idea," Guilfoyle explained to her approving co-hosts. "They don't get it!"</p> <p>"They're not in that same life experience of paying the bills, doing the mortgage, kids, community, crime, education, health care. They're like healthy and hot and running around without a care in the world," she added.</p> <p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="354" src="//" width="630"></iframe></p> <p>But what to do with all of our overabundant, perky energy?!&nbsp;Guilfoyle says not to worry&ndash;just "go back on Tinder or" and all will be right in the world.</p> <p>Sigh. For a more detailed look into what a war on voting looks like, check out <a href="" target="_blank">our coverage here. </a></p></body></html> Mixed Media Video Elections Media Sex and Gender Wed, 22 Oct 2014 19:09:40 +0000 Inae Oh 263056 at The Midwest's Vast Farms Are Losing a Ton of Money This Year <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><body><p>Think you have it tough at work? Consider the plight of the Midwest's corn and soybean farmers. They churn out the basic raw materials of our food system: the stuff that gets turned into animal feed, sweetener, cooking fat, and even a substantial amount of our car fuel. What do they get for their trouble? According to a <a href="" target="_blank">stunning analysis</a> (PDF) by Iowa State ag economist Chad Hart, crop prices have fallen so low (a bumper crop has <a href="" target="_blank">driven down corn prices to their lowest level since 2006</a>), and input costs (think seeds, fertilizers, pesticides) have gotten so high, that they're losing $225 per acre of corn and $100 per acre of soybeans.&nbsp; So if you're an Iowa farmer with a 2,000-acre farm, and you planted it half and half in these two dominant crops, you stand to lose $325,000 on this year's harvest.</p> <p>Over on Big Picture Agriculture&mdash;the excellent blog that alerted me to Hart's assessment&mdash;Kay McDonald <a href="" target="_blank">wonders</a>: "Is organic corn the way to go next year?" She points out organic corn receives a large premium in the market, and key input costs&mdash;seeds, fertilizers, and insecticides&mdash;are much lower, making the economics better.</p> <p>Another possibility is one I've been <a href="" target="_blank">banging on about for years</a>: why not take some of the Midwest's vast stock of farmland&mdash;say, 10 percent?&mdash;and devote it to <a href="" target="_blank">vegetable and fruit production</a>? And take another slice of it and bring it back to <a href="" target="_blank">perennial grass for pasture-based beef and pork production?</a> Both vegetables and pastured meat deliver much more income pre acre than commodity corn and soybeans, once the systems are up and running and the infrastructure in place. And considering how much of our produce comes from drought-stricken California, that would likely be a wise move from a food security standpoint.</p> <p>Alas, none of this is likely to happen, at least not anytime soon. That's because crop subsidies, enshrined by the farm bill signed in February, will likely wipe out much of the huge gap between farmers' costs and what the market gives them. According to <a href="" target="_blank">Bloomberg</a>, taxpayers are set to pay "billions of dollars more to subsidize farmers than anticipated just months ago," before crop prices plunged.</p> <p>I don't begrudge federal support for farming. As I argued in a <a href="" target="_blank">post</a> last year, large-scale commodity farming is a vicious business&mdash;farmers are caught in a vice between a small handful of buyers (Archers Daniels Midland, Cargill, Bunge) that are always looking to drive crop prices down, and a small handful of input suppliers (Monsanto, DuPont Pioneer, Syngenta, etc) always looking to push the price of seeds, fertilizers, and pesticides up. It's no wonder, as Iowa State's Hart has <a href="" target="_blank">shown</a>, that the "long run profitability" of such farming is "zero."</p> <p>But as it's structured now, the subsidy system keeps farmers chugging along on the corn-soy treadmill. Meanwhile, transitioning to organic ag and diversifying crops to include vegetables and pastured meat would also require much more hands-on labor and a new set of skills for Midwestern farmers, who have been operating in a corn-soy-chemical system for decades. It would also require the rebuilding of infrastructure&mdash;small-scale slaughterhouses, canneries, cold storage, etc.&mdash;that were dismantled as corn and soy came to dominance. Supporting such a transition, and not propping up an unhealthy food system suffused with cheap corn and soy, seems like a good use of the billions of federal dollars that are about to be spent.</p></body></html> Tom Philpott Food and Ag Wed, 22 Oct 2014 18:57:44 +0000 Tom Philpott 263006 at I Am Being Followed By an Army of Twitter Lady Bots <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><body><p>I've been making a real effort to be better at Twitter lately. I've been tweeting more, striking a conversational tone, and trying to "just be myself," like people who know more about Twitter than me told me to. So I was thrilled this week when my follower count zoomed up from 3,030 to 3,066 over the course of just a few days. My efforts must have paid off, I thought.</p> <p>But then, I looked at my new followers. They all seemed pretty annoying. IN EXACTLY THE SAME WAY. Check it out:</p> <div class="inline inline-center" style="display: table; width: 1%"> <div class="inline inline-center" style="display: table; width: 1%"><img alt="" class="image" src="/files/twitter-bots-small.gif"></div> </div> <p>"Hipster-friendly music practitioner"? "Total travel advocate"? "Beer practitioner"? Ew!</p> <p>The formula for the handles seems to be: first name, middle initial, last name. And the bio items look like they're generated from a list of bland hobbies and jobs or something. All over the backdrop of some irrelevant stock art.</p> <p>Here are some of their tweets:</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p>You can't just wish for a better life. You have to create it.</p> &mdash; SarahSSmall (@SarahSSmall) <a href="">October 19, 2014</a></blockquote> <script async src="//" charset="utf-8"></script><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p>Tonight on <a href="">@WNTonight</a> investors react to Ebola scare, fears of global slowdown. What does it mean for your retirement savings?</p> &mdash; BerniceWHenry (@BerniceWHenry) <a href="">October 17, 2014</a></blockquote> <script async src="//" charset="utf-8"></script><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p>Those of you who "elected" obama, this is all on you. He's a fake, you're confused, and now we ALL are having to pay for this foolishness...</p> &mdash; AdelineJBuckingham (@AdelineJBucking) <a href="">October 19, 2014</a></blockquote> <script async src="//" charset="utf-8"></script><p>Creepy Twitter lady bots, what do you want from me?</p></body></html> Mixed Media Wed, 22 Oct 2014 18:50:57 +0000 Kiera Butler 263061 at Housekeeping Update <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><body><p>Just a quick update. Yesterday my doctor decided to do a "little bedside test" to get a better reading on the state of my bones. It was indeed bedside, and it was indeed done with just a local anesthetic, but I guess it wasn't a very powerful one. Hoo boy, did that hurt, and naturally I was a total baby about it. In any case, they want to keep me here for at least another day to make sure I didn't get infected etc. Also, today I get my first monthly dose of some bone-strengthening med whose name escapes me. So it looks like it'll be tomorrow at the earliest before I go home. It depends on how I'm doing and what the doctor gods decree. But I walked 300 feet this morning without too much trouble, so that has to be a positive sign, doesn't it?</p> <p>When will blogging recommence? I'm not sure. In the meantime, though, enjoy a bonus cat.</p> <p><img align="middle" alt="" class="image image-_original" src="/files/blog_hopper_2014_10_22.jpg" style="border: 1px solid black; margin: 15px 0px 5px 60px;"></p></body></html> Kevin Drum Wed, 22 Oct 2014 14:58:49 +0000 Kevin Drum 263031 at In Just 15 Years, Wind Could Provide A Fifth Of The World's Electricity <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><body><p>Up to one fifth of the world's electricity supply could come from wind turbines by 2030, according to a <a href="" target="_blank">new report</a> released this week by Greenpeace and the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC). That would be an increase of 530 percent compared to the end of last year.</p> <p>The report says the coming global boom in wind power will be driven largely by China's rebounding wind energy market&mdash;and a continued trend of <a href="" target="_blank">high levels of Chinese green energy investment</a>&mdash;as well as by steady growth in the United States and new large-scale projects in Mexico, Brazil, and South Africa.</p> <p>The report, called the "Global Wind Energy Outlook," explains how wind energy could provide 2,000 gigawatts of electricity by 2030, which would account for 17 to 19 percent of global electricity. And by 2050, wind's share of the electricity market could reach 30 percent. That's a huge jump from the end of 2013, when wind provided around 3 percent of electricity worldwide.</p> <p>The report is an annually produced industry digest co-authored by the GWEC, which represents 1,500 wind power producers. It examines three "energy scenarios" based on projections used by the International Energy Agency. The "New Policies" scenario attempts to capture the direction and intentions of international climate policy, even if some of these policies have yet to be fully implemented. From there, GWEC has fashioned two other scenarios&mdash;"moderate" and "advanced"&mdash;which reflect two different ways&nbsp;nations might cut carbon and keep their commitments to global climate change policies.&nbsp;In the most ambitious scenario, "advanced," wind could help slash more than 3 billion tons of climate-warning carbon dioxide emissions each year. The following chart has been adapted and simplified from the report:</p> <div class="inline inline-left" style="display: table; width: 1%"><img alt="" class="image" src="/files/chart1_5.jpg"></div> <p>In the best case scenario, China leads the way in 2020 and in 2030:</p> <div class="inline inline-left" style="display: table; width: 1%"><img alt="" class="image" src="/files/chart2_2_0.jpg"></div> <p>But as the report's authors note, there is still substantial uncertainty in the market. "There is much that we don't know about the future," they write, "and there will no doubt be unforeseen shifts and shocks in the global economy as well as political ups and downs." The more optimistic results contained in the report are dependent on whether the global community is going to respond "proactively to the threat of climate change, or try to do damage control after the fact," the report says.</p></body></html> Blue Marble Charts Climate Change Climate Desk Energy Infrastructure Wed, 22 Oct 2014 14:36:44 +0000 James West 262981 at We're Still at War: Photo of the Day for October 22, 2014 <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><body><p class="rtecenter"><em>A US Marine Sgt. speaks with a local child while on patrol in Afghanistan. (US Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Darien J. Bjorndal)</em></p></body></html> MoJo Afghanistan Military Wed, 22 Oct 2014 14:28:42 +0000 263021 at RIP Ben Bradlee, 1921-2014 <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><body><p>Ben Bradlee, the <a href=";action=click&amp;pgtype=Homepage&amp;version=LargeMediaHeadlineSumCentered&amp;module=photo-spot-region&amp;region=top-news&amp;WT.nav=top-news" target="_blank">legendary <em>Washington Post</em> editor</a>, who led the paper during its Watergate era and turned it into a national and global reporting powerhouse, died on Tuesday at the age of 93.</p> <p>"I don't mean to sound arrogant, but we are in a holy profession," Bradlee <a href="" target="_blank">once said.</a></p> <p>He was the <em>Post's</em> executive editor from 1968 to 1991. RIP.</p></body></html> Mixed Media Media Wed, 22 Oct 2014 12:58:27 +0000 Inae Oh 263011 at Voter's Boyfriend to Obama: "Mr. President, Don't Touch My Girlfriend" <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><body><p>President Barack Obama was in Chicago on Monday to cast an <a href="" target="_blank">early vote</a> for the midterm elections. He did so while standing next to fellow voter Aia Cooper. Cooper's boyfriend, who was also standing nearby, issued a remarkable warning to the president:</p> <p>"Mr. President, don't touch my girlfriend."</p> <p>With Cooper laughing, but clearly mortified, the exchange that follows is just priceless. (Well played, Mr. President.) Watch below:</p> <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="357" src="" width="630"></iframe></p></body></html> Mixed Media Video Obama Tue, 21 Oct 2014 19:11:10 +0000 Inae Oh 262971 at Elizabeth Warren Demands An Investigation Of Mortgage Companies <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><body><p>On Monday, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) called on the Government Accountability Office to investigate non-bank companies that service Americans' mortgages, <a href="" target="_blank">noting in a letter</a> co-signed by Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) that an increasing number of lawsuits has been filed in recent years against these firms&mdash;which are not regulated as strictly as banks.</p> <p>Mortgage servicers, whether they are owned by banks or not, handle mortgages after they've been sold to a customer. That means they take care of administrative business including collecting mortgage payments and dealing with delinquent borrowers. What Warren and Cummings are worried about is that the share of non-banks servicing mortgages has grown astronomically&mdash;300 percent between 2011 and 2013&mdash;and it appears that the increased workload has led to shoddier service.</p> <p>The rise of the industry, which typically services <a href="" target="_blank">lower-income borrowers</a>, "has been accompanied by consumer complaints, lawsuits, and other regulatory actions as the servicers' workload outstrips their processing capacity," according to a recent report by the Federal Housing Finance Agency. Last December, for instance, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau&mdash;the agency Warren helped create&mdash;entered a $2 billion settlement with the nation's largest non-bank servicer over mortgage mismanagement. Financial industry watchdogs and consumer advocates have <a href="" target="_blank">charged</a> that the non-bank home loan servicing companies are often unwilling to work with troubled borrowers to modify mortgages and prevent foreclosures.</p> <p>In their letter, Warren and Cummings also urge the Government Accountability Office to investigate how consumers might be harmed in the event that a large non-bank servicer collapses during a economic downturn. Non-bank mortgage companies are not subject to the regulations governing banks that perform the same functions, such as the requirement that they hold onto a certain amount of emergency funds in case of a financial collapse.</p></body></html> MoJo Corporations Economy Regulatory Affairs Tue, 21 Oct 2014 16:12:28 +0000 Erika Eichelberger 262961 at Rwanda Hits Back at America's Ebola Paranoia <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><body><p>Rwanda will be begin <a href="" target="_blank">screening</a> all Americans entering the country for Ebola, regardless if they're exhibiting symptoms or not, government officials in the East African nation announced Tuesday. Coincidence? The new measure comes just days after <a href="" target="_blank">two Rwandan students </a>were denied enrollment at a New Jersey school over Ebola fears, even though Rwanda has had zero cases of Ebola. The United States, on the other hand, has had three confirmed cases. Rwanda is also more than <a href="" target="_blank">2,500 miles</a> from the closest Ebola outbreak in West Africa.</p> <p>The US Embassy in Rwanda <a href="" target="_blank">explains the situation: </a></p> <blockquote> <p>On October 19, the Rwandan Ministry of Health introduced new Ebola Virus Disease screening requirements. Visitors who have been in the United States or Spain during the last 22 days are now required to report their medical condition&mdash;regardless of whether they are experiencing symptoms of Ebola&mdash;by telephone by dialing 114 between 7:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. for the duration of their visit to Rwanda (if less than 21 days), or for the first 21 days of their visit to Rwanda. Rwandan authorities continue to deny entry to visitors who traveled to Guinea, Liberia, Senegal, or Sierra Leone within the past 22 days.</p> </blockquote> <p>Although there's no way to tell if the screenings are indeed motivated by retaliation for the ignorant panic displayed by the New Jersey school, this sure is an interesting turn of events.</p></body></html> MoJo Health Tue, 21 Oct 2014 15:40:55 +0000 Inae Oh 262946 at Everything You Need to Know About Ebola in America, in One Fantastic Quote <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><body><p><a href="" style="line-height: 2em;" target="_blank">Meet a man made of very stern stuff indeed</a><span style="font-family: Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; line-height: 2em;">:</span></p> <blockquote> <p>Peter Pattakos spent 20 minutes Saturday in an Akron bridal shop, getting fitted for a tux for his friend's wedding. Thursday, his friend sent a text message, telling him that Ebola patient Amber Joy Vinson had been in the store around the same time.</p> <p>[...]</p> <p>Pattakos, 36, a Cleveland attorney who lives in Bath Township, called the health department, which told him to call back if he exhibits any Ebola symptoms. He called a doctor, who told him not to worry.</p> <p>"I didn't exchange any bodily fluids with anyone, so I'm not worried about it," he said. "I'm much more likely to be mistakenly killed by a police officer in this country than to be killed by Ebola, even if you were in the same bridal shop."</p> </blockquote> <p>Yep.</p></body></html> MoJo Ebola Tue, 21 Oct 2014 03:13:21 +0000 Ben Dreyfuss 262936 at Elizabeth Warren Was on Fire This Weekend. Here Were Her 5 Best Lines. <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><body><p>It's good to be Elizabeth Warren. The senior senator from Massachusetts spent her weekend campaigning for Democrats in <a href="" target="_blank">Minnesota</a>, <a href="" target="_blank">Colorado</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Iowa</a>, and by all accounts, she tore it up, and got <a href="" target="_blank">more than a few calls</a> to run for president. (Breaking: <a href="" target="_blank">she still insists</a> she isn't going to.) These were some of her biggest red-meat lines from the campaign trail:</p> <p><strong>1. "<a href="" target="_blank">The game is rigged, and the Republicans rigged it.</a> </strong>We can whine, we can whimper or we can fight back, and we&rsquo;re here to fight back. We know what we&rsquo;re fighting for and what we&rsquo;re up against. We&rsquo;ve got our voices, or votes and our willingness to fight. This is about democracy, about your future, and about the kind of country we want to build.&rdquo;</p> <p><strong>2. <a href="" target="_blank">"[W]ho does this government work for?</a></strong>&hellip;Does it work just for the millionaires, just for the billionaires, just for those who have armies of lobbyists and lawyers or does it work for the people? That&rsquo;s the question in this race.&rdquo;</p> <p><strong>3. "<a href="" target="_blank">Republicans believe this country should work for those who are rich</a></strong>, those who are powerful, those who can hire armies of lobbyists and lawyers."</p> <p><strong>4. <a href="" target="_blank">When conservatives came to power in the 1980s, the first thing they did was "fire the cops on Wall Street. </a></strong>They called it deregulation. But what it really meant was have at 'em boys. They were saying in effect to the biggest financial institutions: Any way you can trick or trap or fool anybody into signing anything, man, you can just rake in the profits."</p> <p><strong>5. <a href="" target="_blank">"They ought to be wearing a T-shirt [that says]...'I got mine. The rest of you are on your own.' </a></strong>We can hang back, we can whine about what the Republicans have done&hellip;or we can fight back. Me, I&rsquo;m fighting back!"</p> <p>Contrast Warren's rock star treatment with the President's reception this weekend: he spoke at a campaign event in Maryland, and attendees <a href="" target="_blank">filed out as soon as he started speaking</a>. Obama is being <a href="" target="_blank">kept at arms' length</a> in close races&mdash;Warren, on the other hand, <a href="" target="_blank">will head to New Hampshire</a> this weekend to campaign for Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, who's running against Warren's old nemesis, Scott Brown.</p></body></html> MoJo Elections Mon, 20 Oct 2014 21:21:59 +0000 Sam Brodey 262891 at The 5 Stupidest Paranoid Responses to Ebola <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><body><p>As President Barack Obama noted in his <a href="" target="_blank">weekly address</a> Saturday, Ebola is a serious public health issue. But the level of paranoia that has surfaced across the country since Thomas Duncan became the first patient diagnosed with the disease in the United States is not only unwarranted&mdash;it's&nbsp; dangerous. Ripped straight from the headlines, here are just five of the more surreal incidents of Ebola panic.</p> <p><strong>Syracuse University disinvites photographer.</strong> Ebola has an incubation period of up to three weeks. If someone hasn't gotten sick within 21 days of exposure, they're in the clear. But <a href="" target="_blank"><em>News Photographer </em>magazine</a> reported last week that "three-time Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalist Michel du Cille of <em>The Washington Post</em>, who returned from covering the Ebola crisis in Liberia 21 days ago and who is symptom free, was asked by Syracuse University officials today not to come to campus, where he was scheduled to participate in a journalism program." Cille was not pleased:</p> <div id="fb-root">&nbsp;</div> <script>(function(d, s, id) { var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0]; if (d.getElementById(id)) return; js = d.createElement(s); = id; js.src = "//"; fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs); }(document, 'script', 'facebook-jssdk'));</script><div class="fb-post" data-href="" data-width="466"> <div class="fb-xfbml-parse-ignore"><a href="">Post</a> by <a href="">Michel du Cille</a>.</div> </div> <p><strong>Maine teacher put on leave after traveling to Dallas.</strong> "A teacher at Strong Elementary School was placed on a 21-day paid leave of absence after parents told the school board they were concerned that she might have been exposed to Ebola during a trip to Dallas for an educational conference," the <a href="" target="_blank"><em>Portland Press Herald</em> recently reported</a>. Dallas, where Duncan's case was first diagnosed, is a city of 1.25 million. <a href="" target="_blank">Five million people</a> travel to and from Dallas every month.</p> <p><strong>Rwandan students kept home from New Jersey elementary school. </strong>Two students who moved from Rwanda&mdash;where there have been zero cases of Ebola&mdash;are being kept home from school in Burlington County, New Jersey, for 21 days in response to concerns from parents. Rwanda "is about 2,600 miles away from the closest affected country in West Africa," <a href="" target="_blank">notes Philadelphia's local Fox station</a>. "That's about as close as Seattle, Washington, is to Philadelphia. But for some parents it really doesn't matter."</p> <p><strong>Cleveland man charged with felony after stupid joke.</strong> "Bond is set at $10,000 for a Cleveland man charged with inducing panic after being accused of telling a Horseshoe Casino&nbsp;worker that he was gambling to avoid his Ebola-stricken ex-wife," <em></em> <a href="" target="_blank">reported last week</a>. Needless to say, neither the man nor his wife has Ebola.</p> <p><strong>Texas college rejects applicants from Ebola-free Nigeria.</strong> Officials at Navarro College in Texas <a href="" target="_blank">cited Ebola</a> as a basis for refusing admission to two Nigerian students.&nbsp;Nigeria has been extraordinarily effective in fighting its recent outbreak, which included just 20 confirmed cases&mdash;so extraordinary, in fact, that as of today, the World's Health Organization <a href="" target="_blank">officially declared the country</a> Ebola-free. After the media caught wind of the story, an official from Navarro pushed back against "misinformation" by saying that the college is focusing on students from China and Indonesia for the next year.</p> <p>There's much, much more out there, but we leave you with this note from Bloomberg's Gabriel Snyder.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p>An impressively diverse array of Ebola paranoia here: <a href=""></a></p> &mdash; Gabriel Snyder (@gabrielsnyder) <a href="">October 20, 2014</a></blockquote> <script async src="//" charset="utf-8"></script></body></html> MoJo Health Top Stories Ebola Mon, 20 Oct 2014 20:41:56 +0000 Inae Oh 262861 at Drinking a "Medium" Soda Every Day Can Age You As Much As Smoking Does <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><body><p>Just as soda companies <a href="" target="_blank">plunk down millions</a> of dollars to defeat local soda-tax ballot measures, researchers have found a link between regular soda consumption and premature aging.</p> <p>Published in the peer-reviewed <em>Journal of Public Health</em>, a <a href=";" target="_blank">study</a> of 5,300 adults compared the cells of people who drink soda every day to those of their non-soda-drinking counterparts. In the soda group, the ends of the chromosomes&mdash;known as telomeres&mdash;were shorter, a sign of their cells' diminished ability to regenerate. Our telomeres naturally shorten as we age, but scientists have discovered that a few behaviors&mdash;including smoking&mdash;can shorten them prematurely.</p> <p>And here's the really interesting part: People who drank a 20-ounce soda every day experienced an additional 4.6 years of telomere aging&mdash;the same amount observed in smokers. "The extremely high dose of sugar that we can put into our body within seconds by drinking sugared beverages is uniquely toxic to metabolism," lead author Elissa Epel, a professor of psychiatry at University of California-San Francisco, <a href="" target="_blank">told</a> <em>Time</em>.</p> <p>The researchers didn't find the same effect in those who drank diet sodas or 100 percent fruit juice.</p></body></html> Blue Marble Food and Ag Health Mon, 20 Oct 2014 18:28:31 +0000 Kiera Butler 262881 at Which Dad is More Embarrassing: Ron Paul or Rafael Cruz? <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><body><p>If Sens. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) and Ted Cruz (R-Texas) do battle for the Republican presidential nomination in 2016, they'll have to carefully manage their most popular yet embarrassing surrogates: their fathers. Here's a quick guide to the septuagenarian bomb-throwers.</p> <div id="test">&nbsp;</div> <script type="text/javascript" src=""></script><script> var pymParent = new pym.Parent('test', '', {}); </script></body></html> MoJo Congress Elections Mon, 20 Oct 2014 18:10:37 +0000 Tim Murphy 262721 at We're Still at War: Photo of the Day for October 20, 2014 <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><body><p class="rtecenter"><em>A US Army Corporal carries a detonation cord to blow up expired ordinance in Afghanistan. <span class="photographer"><span id="ctl00_cphBody_lblCredit">(US Army photo by Staff Sgt. Whitney Houston)</span></span></em></p></body></html> MoJo Military Mon, 20 Oct 2014 15:16:26 +0000 262871 at