New Tax Law Works for Billionaire and Goldman Sachs
Under a six-lane span of freeway leading into downtown Baltimore sit what may be the most valuable parking spaces in America, report ProPublica and WNYC as part of their continuing Trump Inc. series. Lying near a development project controlled by Under Armour’s billionaire CEO Kevin Plank, one of Maryland’s richest men, and Goldman Sachs, the little sliver of land will allow Plank and the other investors to claim what could amount to millions in tax breaks for the project, known as Port Covington. They have President Donald Trump’s 2017 tax overhaul law to thank. The new law has a provision meant to spur investment into underdeveloped areas, called “opportunity zones.” The idea is to grant lucrative tax breaks to encourage new investment in poor areas around the country, carefully selected by each state’s governor. But Port Covington, an ambitious development geared to millennials to feature offices, a hotel, apartments, and shopping, is not in a census tract that is poor. It’s not a new investment. And the census tract only became eligible to be an opportunity zone thanks to a mapping error.
Drug Running on Canada’s Southern Border
Lija Greenseid, a rule-abiding Minnesota mom steering her Mazda5 on a cross-border drug run. Her daughter, who is 13, has Type 1 diabetes and needs insulin. In the United States, it can cost hundreds of dollars per vial. In Canada, you can buy it without a prescription for a tenth of that price. So, reports The Washington Post, Greenseid led a small caravan last month to the town of Fort Frances, Ontario, where she and five other Americans paid about $1,200 for drugs that would have cost them $12,000 in the United States. The organizers of the caravan—their word, a nod to the migrants traveling in groups through Mexico to the U.S. border—are speaking out about their trip because they want Americans to see how drug prices push ordinary people to extremes. “When you have a bad health-care system, it makes good people feel like outlaws,” Greenseid said.“It’s demeaning. It’s demoralizing. It’s unjust.” They’re planning another run to Canada this month to stock up on insulin—and to call attention to their cause. This time, they’ll be taking the scenic route, driving from Minnesota through Wisconsin, Illinois, and Michigan en route to London, Ontario, where Frederick Banting began the work that led to the discovery of insulin nearly a century ago.
Police Officers Disciplined for Hateful Internet Posts
The Philadelphia Police Department has re-assigned 72 officers after The Plain View Project, a watchdog group that monitors social media posts, revealed thousands of offensive postings by current and former officers. Police officials in Philadelphia are describing the action as the largest removal of officers from the street in recent memory. “We are equally as disgusted by many of the posts that you saw and in many cases, the rest of the nation saw,” said Philadelphia Police Commissioner Richard Ross. It is the latest fallout since the advocacy group earlier this month released thousands of Facebook posts and comments by current and former police officers that range from racist memes, to posts celebrating violence and messages containing Islamophobic themes, among other offensive material.
Trump Gets Ready to Demote Fed Chairman
Trump has told confidants that he believes he has the authority to replace Jerome Powell as chairman of the Federal Reserve Board, Bloomberg reported. In Trump’s line of thinking, he could demote Powell to be a board governor, but isn’t planning to do so right now, the people added. The people, who requested anonymity to discuss internal White House deliberations, said Trump’s frustration with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin is limited to his recommendation to pick Powell as Fed chair. Mnuchin is otherwise in good standing with the president, they said. Trump’s attacks on the Fed are a departure from almost three decades of caution in the White House about making public comments on monetary policy, out of respect for the independence of the central bank. It’s typical for administration appointees to step down if they lose the president’s confidence, but the Fed is different. The central bank has a long tradition of being accountable to Congress, not the White House. Trump told ABC News last week that he disagreed with Powell “entirely,” adding that “if we had a different person in the Federal Reserve that wouldn’t have raised interest rates so much,” economic growth would have been stronger.
Conservative columnist: Republicans should dare to impeach over Ukraine
The latest Trump international scandal emerged when an anonymous whistleblower in the intelligence community lodged a complaint related to President Trump's discussions with a foreign leader. Although not much is known about the content of the complaint, speculation has arisen that Trump offered the president of Ukraine foreign aid in a way that could be interpreted as quid pro quo for dirt on Vice President Joe Biden.
Writing in the conservative publication The Bulwark, columnist Jonathan V. Last outlines the Republicans' options. They can continue to do nothing to rein in the president. They could try to make the story about Biden. Or they could dare to impeach.
This influential feminist philosopher didn’t believe in being ‘a strong woman’ — here’s why
In The Second Sex (1949), Simone de Beauvoir argued that women were at a disadvantage in a society where they grew up under ‘a multiplicity of incompatible myths’ about women. Instead of being encouraged to dream their own dreams and pursue meaningful projects for their lives, Beauvoir argued that the ‘myths’ proposed to women, whether in literature or history, science or psychoanalysis, encouraged them to believe that to be a woman was to be for others – and especially for men. Throughout childhood, girls were fed a steady diet of stories that led them to believe that to succeed as a woman was to succeed at love – and that to succeed at other things would make them less lovable.
A psychological analysis of Nazism reveals the danger of governments led by narcissists and psychopaths
After spending his early life suffering under the Nazis and then Stalin, the Polish psychologist Andrew Lobaczewski devoted his career to studying the relationship between psychological disorders and politics. He wanted to understand why psychopaths and narcissists are so strongly attracted to power as well as the processes by which they take over governments and countries.
He eventually came up with the term “pathocracy” to describe governments made up of people with these disorders – and the concept is by no means confined to regimes of the past.