Mighty, Fallen: Aware of its reputation, the US has promised Russia that Snowden would not face the death penalty and would not be tortured (depending, of course on the definition of that rather flexible term) if the Russians would just hand him over. Nothing was said about a little sodomy and voluntary confinement. So far Putin is not convinced.
Grounded: Halliburton has pled guilty to destroying evidence of its role in the Deepwater Horizon disaster and agreed to pay 0.0007% of last year's profits as a mea culpa. "Their willingness to plead to this may also indicate that they'd like to settle up with the federal government on the civil penalties." Also on the cheap. The company made a separate and voluntary contribution of $55 million to the National Fish & Wildlife Foundation. Out of the goodness of their heart.
War Plans: The US – or at least that part of it under control of House Republicans - intends to intensify its economic warfare against Iran by eliminating its ability to export any oil at all. The Senate is expected to go along; Washington hasn't met a war in the last 60 years that it didn't like right off.
Guilty Consciences: With FHFA's $885 million settlement with UBS for mortgage bond fraud as motivation, Credit Suisse and Deutsche Bank have “set aside money” to pay their pennance, while RBS expects to have to make “a multi-billion dollar payment” to the US and be broken up. SAC Capital, which already has paid nearly a billion in oops money is now facing “a raft of criminal charges”. George Bailey these guys aren't.
As Planned: The bankruptcy lawyer the governor of MI sent to Detroit has filed for bankruptcy, as instructed. Now he is preparing to sell off the city's art collection, public lands and buildings and so on. He is also going forward with the preplanned gutting of pension funds, unions and unsecured bondholders, giving them 10 cents on the dollar. Banks will be getting 75 cents on the dollar. Seems fair.
Freedom From The Press: The White House is "concerned and disappointed" that the journalist who reported on the US drone strikes in Yemen that killed dozens of innocent civilians has been released from jail. Knowing the truth may set you free, reporting it, not so much.
Mean Spirited: Republicans are actively trying to undermine the federal health care system by refusing to help their own constituents navigate the system. Republicans not only don't want to help their constituents access needed help, they continue to lie about the program. Never before in the nation's history has one house of Congress devoted most of its efforts to undermining a law that passed both houses, was signed by the president and upheld by the Supreme Court.
Fog Of War: The Pentagon maintains it is “not sure there is a list” of places and people being targeted by drones, and if such a list does exist, you can't see it because the people our drones are lobbing missiles at don't know we're dropping missiles on them. Or something like that.
The Ears of Providence: Next time you misplace your cell phone, just ask the guys at NSA – they can locate it even if it's turned off. The can also probably turn it on an listen to you, just as they can with landline phones. That's why they know a lot more about you than you think.
Words Is Words: Did George Zimerman get away with murder? Define 'murder' in light of the
The Parting Shot: