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Forget Taxing Marijuana; The Real Money’s In Cocaine

Via NPR:
A Harvard economist has estimated how much money states would raise by legalizing and taxing marijuana and cocaine. In a podcast a while back, Harvard’s Jeffrey Miron told us that his estimates for what California would bring in from taxing marijuana are much smaller than some of the numbers that are floating around out there (including a $1.4 billion estimate from state officials). Since that interview, Miron has come out with a paper estimating, among other things, potential tax revenues from cocaine and marijuana. It turns out the big tax money is in cocaine.
Maybe someone can figure out a way to get carbon credits for growing cocoa leaves, too, to really jazz this proposal up. - Greg Pollowitz

So Sad: President Postpones His Spring-Break Asia Trip To June

Via Fox News:
President Obama has postponed his trip to Indonesia and Australia until June so he can work on health care reform, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said. “The president greatly regrets the delay,” Gibbs said. “But passage of health care reform is of paramount importance, and the president is determined to see this battle through.”
Assuming the HCR debate isn't still going on in June. . . - Greg Pollowitz
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Panic: Wisconsin Senate: Feingold, Thompson Neck-and-Neck

Via Rasmussen Reports:
Democratic incumbent Russ Feingold continues to lead his two announced Republican opponents in Wisconsin’s race for the U.S. Senate, and his hypothetical match-up with former Republican Governor Tommy Thompson is now a toss-up.
Now if Thompson would actually run. . . - Greg Pollowitz

Where’s The Outrage? Israeli Man Killed By Gaza Rocket

Via Fox News:
JERUSALEM — A rocket fired by Palestinian militants from the Gaza Strip killed a man inside Israel Thursday, Israeli medics said, in the first death from such an attack since Israel’s Gaza offensive last year. Such rocket fire once common but have become rare since the Israeli military’s campaign in the Gaza Strip last year, which aimed to bring an end to the attacks. Israel’s emergency service Magen David Adom said the man killed was about 30 years old and appeared to be a farm worker from Thailand employed in an agricultural community just north of Gaza. Thursday’s attack came on the same day as a visit to Gaza by Europe’s top diplomat, EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton, the first such visit by a senior official in more than a year. Ashton had just crossed into Gaza when the attack took place.
So Israel announces it's going to continue building in East Jerusalem - something that both the US and Israel knew - and the US goes nuts because it happened while Biden was visiting. The Palestinians commit an act of terrorism while the top EU diplomat is visiting and the US reaction will be what, exactly? - Greg Pollowitz

Why Did Bank Rgulators Get Huge Bonuses, Too?

Via AP:
WASHINGTON — Banks weren’t the only ones giving big bonuses in the boom years before the worst financial crisis in generations. The government also was handing out millions of dollars to bank regulators, rewarding “superior” work even as an avalanche of risky mortgages helped create the meltdown. The payments, detailed in payroll data released to The Associated Press under the Freedom of Information Act, are the latest evidence of the government’s false sense of security during the go-go days of the financial boom. Just as bank executives got bonuses despite taking on dangerous amounts of risk, regulators got taxpayer-funded bonuses despite missing or ignoring signs that the system was on the verge of a meltdown. Read more at the Washington Examiner: http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/politics/ap/ap-impact-govt-bank-regula...
It's not like the regulators missed any warning signs at all regarding the risks being taken at these big banks, right? - Greg Pollowitz
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Only In San Fran: When Vegan Anarchists Attack

Via San Francisco Chronicle :
SAN FRANCISCO — An ex-vegan who was hit with chili pepper-laced pies at an anarchist event in San Francisco said Tuesday that her assailants were cowards who should direct their herbivorous rage at the powerful – not at a fellow radical for writing a book denouncing animal-free diets. Lierre Keith, a 45-year-old Arcata resident, was attacked at 2:15 p.m. Saturday at the 15th annual Bay Area Anarchist Book Fair while discussing her 2009 book, “The Vegetarian Myth.” A 20-year vegan, Keith now argues that the diet is unhealthy and that agriculture is destroying the world.
Thanks to reader J. d'M. for sending this in. - Greg Pollowitz

So Sad: Drone Strike Kills Senior Qaeda Leader in Pakistan

Via New York Times:
WASHINGTON — A strike by an unmanned drone last week killed a senior commander of Al Qaeda who had played a significant role in planning the killing of Central Intelligence Agency operatives in late December at a base in Afghanistan, according to American officials. The March 8 strike was one of a series aimed at suspected participants in the deadly attack in Khost Province, which took place just before a meeting with a militant who the Americans believed could provide information on Al Qaeda’s operations. Seven Americans and a Jordanian intelligence officer died in that attack. According to a United States counterterrorism official, the Qaeda operative killed last week was Hussein al-Yemeni. The drone missile struck in Miram Shah in North Waziristan, a part of Pakistan where Al Qaeda is considered well dug in.
How come no Dems are complaining that the threshold to blow up a terrorist with a missile is lower than that of waterboarding? - Greg Pollowitz

True Story: ‘Green Leprechaun’ Shot Dead In St Patrick’s Day Robbery

Via Telegraph:
Two bank robbery suspects, including one dressed in a green leprechaun costume, were shot dead after a St Patrick’s Day chase and shoot-out with police in Tennessee, authorities said.
Is it wrong to laugh at this? - Greg Pollowitz

VIDEO: Obama On Fox News

Via Fox News:
. . .BAIER: You have said at least four times in the past two weeks: “the United States Congress owes the American people a final up or down vote on health care.” So do you support the use of this Slaughter rule? The deem and pass rule, so that Democrats avoid a straight up or down vote on the Senate bill? OBAMA: Here’s what I think is going to happen and what should happen. You now have a proposal from me that will be in legislation, that has the toughest insurance reforms in history, makes sure that people are able to get insurance even if they’ve got preexisting conditions, makes sure that we are reducing costs for families and small businesses, by allowing them to buy into a pool, the same kind of pool that members of Congress have.
You just knew there was no way their idiotic boycott would last. - Greg Pollowitz

Army Changes Basic Training

Via AOL News:
FORT JACKSON, S.C. -New soldiers are grunting through the kind of stretches and twists found in “ab blaster” classes at suburban gyms as the Army revamps its basic training regimen for the first time in three decades. Heeding the advice of Iraq and Afghanistan combat veterans, commanders are dropping five-mile runs and bayonet drills in favor of zigzag sprints and exercises that hone core muscles. Battlefield sergeants say that’s the kind of fitness needed to dodge across alleys, walk patrol with heavy packs and body armor or haul a buddy out of a burning vehicle. Trainers also want to toughen recruits who are often more familiar with Facebook than fistfights. “Soldiers need to be able to move quickly under load, to be mobile under load, with your body armor, your weapons and your helmet, in a stressful situation,” said Frank Palkoska, head of the Army’s Fitness School at Fort Jackson, which has worked several years on overhauling the regime.
The changes seem to make sense to me. Any military readers care to weigh in? - Greg Pollowitz

It Begins: Netanyahu’s Brother-In-Law - Obama Is An Anti-Semite

Via Ha'aretz:
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s brother-in-law Dr. Hagai Ben-Artzi on Wednesday called U.S. President Barack Obama an anti-Semite in an interview with Army Radio. “It’s not that Obama doesn’t like Bibi,” he referring to Netanyahu using his nickname. “He doesn’t like the nation of Israel.” Netanyahu was quick to distance himself from Ben-Artzi’s remarks, saying he completely disagrees with his brother-in-law.
Obama is losing Israel. Will American Jews follow? - Greg Pollowitz

The History Of Eating Corned Beef On St. Patrick’s Day

Via Religion Facts:
Corned beef and cabbage is the traditional meal enjoyed by many on St. Patrick’s Day, but only half of it is truly Irish. Cabbage has long been a staple of the Irish diet, but it was traditionally served with Irish bacon, not corned beef. The corned beef was substituted for bacon by Irish immigrants to the Americas around the turn of the century who could not afford the real thing. They learned about the cheaper alternative from their Jewish neighbors.
You're welcome! - Greg Pollowitz

Panic: Whitman Up Over Brown in Calif.

Via Politics Daily:
Republican Meg Whitman, the former chief executive of eBay, has edged ahead of state Attorney General Jerry Brown in the race for the California governor’s seat, according to a Field Poll conducted March 9-15. Whitman leads Brown, 46 percent to 43 percent, with 11 percent undecided. While that advantage falls within the poll’s 3.7 point margin of error, it is a big change from January when Brown led, 46 percent to 36 percent, with 18 percent undecided.
Well, California will never be "red," but a dark pink is pretty nice. - Greg Pollowitz

‘I’m Calling The President A Liar’

Via Politics Daily:
During his speech in Strongsville, Ohio, on Monday afternoon, President Obama highlighted the struggle of Natoma Canfield, a cleaning woman from the nearby town of Medina who is fighting cancer without benefit of health insurance. But it was another woman, Ingrid Martin, an out-of-work health care sales representative, who caught his attention — and debated him on the merits of his health care plan for two minutes after his speech.
Read the entire piece and wait until the Left calls her just another racist teabagger. - Greg Pollowitz

Pelosi Calls All Female Democratic Members Into Meeting

Via Roll Call:
Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) is asking all female Democratic Members to attend a hastily called meeting Wednesday morning but isn’t saying what the meeting is about. Pelosi’s office sent an e-mail out Tuesday evening requesting that all female Democrats come to the Members-only meeting at 10 a.m.
Tickle fight! - Greg Pollowitz

Is General Petraeus Behind Obama’s Dressing Down of Israel? Max Boot: ‘No’

Via Commentary:
What’s behind the administration’s new get-tough policy with Israel? If you believe Mark Perry, a former Arafat adviser and author of Talking to Terrorists: Why America Must Engage with Its Enemies, it’s the doing of General David Petraeus. In a rather imaginative post at Foreign Policy’s web site, he claims that on Jan. 16
Well, someone other than the terrorist regimes must be to blame for the lack of a peace process, right? - Greg Pollowitz

Quote Of The Day: Gov. Perry Unloads On The Federal Government

Via Washington Examiner:
“How many Americans will have to die before our federal government takes serious action along the Texas-Mexico border?” Perry said in a statement. “For years, they have failed in their vital duty to secure the border, resulting in escalating violence.”
As Obama tries to pivot toward immigration reform, he should remember that "build the fence first" was pretty much the consensus last time around. - Greg Pollowitz

Mexico Wants Our Help To Fight Its Drug War

Via BBC:
Mexican President Felipe Calderon has called for the United States to share responsibility in the battle against drug traffickers in the two countries. His comments came on a one-day visit to the border city of Ciudad Juarez, where three people connected to the US consulate were killed on Saturday. Hundreds of demonstrators greeted Mr Calderon demanding the withdrawal of Mexican troops from the town. Meanwhile, Texas has increased border patrols in the wake of the violence. “The violence is a problem for both nations, one that has its origin in the consumption of drugs in the US and the criminality associated with trafficking,” Mr Calderon said during his visit.
Well, I believe conservatives had a crazy idea of putting a giant fence along the border which would make it harder for drugs to get into America. Whatever happened to that plan? - Greg Pollowitz

Cleveland Clinic: No, We’re Not Going To Take That Woman’s Home

Via AP:
A woman championed as the Obama administration’s emblem for health care reform does not have to choose between her home and her health, according to officials at the Ohio hospital where she is being treated. With a self-reported annual income of about $6,000, Natoma Canfield is a prime candidate for financial aid in the form of Medicaid — the federal health care program for low-income and disabled people — or charitable assistance. And the Cleveland Clinic said it has no intention of putting out a lien on Canfield’s house — or letting the billing process interfere with her treatment.
So, when will President Obama issue a retraction? - Greg Pollowitz

Awkward: Rep. Conyers Won’t Pay For His Wife’s Lawyer

Via Washington Examiner:
The National Law Journal reports that former Detroit City Councilwoman Monica Conyers, wife of House Judiciary Chairman John Conyers, D-Mich., has been declared indigent by a federal judge. That means she gets a public defender in her attempt to appeal her three-year prison sentence on a bribery charge to which she pleaded guilty. “[Conyers] says she can’t afford a lawyer…despite the fact that her husband — who is the second-longest serving current member of the U.S. House of Representatives — makes $174,000 a year
Why pay for a lawyer when it's, I'd say, a good shot she gets a commuted sentence. - Greg Pollowitz

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