Morning Must Reads: November 13

In the news: the proxy battle Syria; Obama Admin. pleads for more time for Iran deal; White House struggles to fix online health insurance marketplace; the American Airlines-US Airways merger; the most expensive work of art ever sold at auction

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Mark Wilson / Getty Images

The early morning sun rises behind the US Capitol Building in Washington, DC.

  • “Outside support for the warring parties in Syria has helped sustain the conflict and transformed it into a proxy battle by regional powers, with Russia, Iran and the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah helping the government and with Saudi Arabia and Qatar providing the main support for the rebels. But the flow of private funds to rebel groups has added a wild-card factor to the war, analysts say, exacerbating divisions in the opposition and bolstering its most extreme elements…” [NYT]
  • “The Obama administration is pleading with Congress to allow more time for diplomacy with Iran, but faces sharp resistance from Republican and Democratic lawmakers determined to further squeeze the Iranian economy and wary of yielding any ground in nuclear negotiations.” [AP]
  • “Software problems with the federal online health insurance marketplace, especially in handling high volumes, are proving so stubborn that the system is unlikely to work fully by the end of the month as the White House has promised…” [WashPost]
  • John Boehner’s Big Choice [National Journal]
    • How Immigration Reform Died, Part II: Speaker Boehner Bails on Bipartisan Legislation [Hill]
  • Partisan Conflict Shadows Budget Conference [National Journal]
  • “AMR Corp. and US Airways Group Inc. reached an antitrust settlement with the U.S. government to allow their $17 billion merger to proceed with only limited concessions, paving the way for a new global airline colossus.” [WSJ]
  • “It took seven superrich bidders to propel a 1969 Francis Bacon triptych to $142.4 million at Christie’s on Tuesday night, making it the most expensive work of art ever sold at auction.” [NYT]
538 comments
collioure
collioure

I really don't want to play with the numbers, and I won't.  In time they will tell their own story.

I posted that 106K signed up.  That was incorrect.

27K signed up.  Another 79K have a plan in their online shopping basket.

roknsteve
roknsteve

I just downloaded Google Chrome and I hope that helps me post on Swampland.  I just can't get enough of you characters.  I'm hooked! .  

DonQuixotic
DonQuixotic

"It is true that the GOP often snatches defeat from the jaws of victory."

Heh, the only post of spambot that hasn't been deleted.

DonQuixotic
DonQuixotic

Occupy Wall Street activists buy $15m of Americans' personal debt

Rolling Jubilee spent $400,000 to purchase debt cheaply from banks before 'abolishing' it, freeing individuals from their bills.  A group of Occupy Wall Street activists has bought almost $15m of Americans' personal debt over the last year as part of the Rolling Jubilee project to help people pay off their outstanding credit.  Rolling Jubilee, set up by Occupy's Strike Debt group following the street protests that swept the world in 2011, launched on 15 November 2012. The group purchases personal debt cheaply from banks before "abolishing" it, freeing individuals from their bills.  By purchasing the debt at knockdown prices the group has managed to free $14,734,569.87 of personal debt, mainly medical debt, spending only $400,000.

"We thought that the ratio would be about 20 to 1," said Andrew Ross, a member of Strike Debt and professor of social and cultural analysis at New York University. He said the team initially envisaged raising $50,000, which would have enabled it to buy $1m in debt.

"We're under no illusions that $15m is just a tiny drop in the secondary debt market. It doesn't make a dent in the amount of debt.

"Our purpose in doing this, aside from helping some people along the way – there's certainly many, many people who are very thankful that their debts are abolished – our primary purpose was to spread information about the workings of this secondary debt market."

forgottenlord
forgottenlord

Ever wonder if the system you built gained sentience and decided to use it to screw with you?

MrObvious
MrObvious

Only 100k signed up.

You'd wish Media would highlight what it fixes instead of the problems, but that's Media for you.

nflfoghorn
nflfoghorn

@Sue_N It's not bad news, either.  Like those 3 million flights that landed safely today in this country alone.  As staggering it is to think of that feat occurring each and every day, nobody gives a darn until one crashes.

outsider
outsider

@DonQuixotic  

If THAT doesn't drive home the point that they're just against anything Obama says, then nothing will. 

DonQuixotic
DonQuixotic

Whoops, never mind.  Even that's gone now.  The Paule has been purged.

DonQuixotic
DonQuixotic

That's 15 million reasons why the Occupy camp is better than the Tea Party.

Sue_N
Sue_N

You kids today!!! *shakes cane at whippersnapper*

fitty_three
fitty_three

@MrObvious  

It'll smooth out.  I'm assuming the 100k are the ones above 138% of poverty.

collioure
collioure

@MrObvious  

That's the news.  106K signed up. 

And you want them to spin it ?????

forgottenlord
forgottenlord

@MrObvious 

Why do you demand that the media give up good rating "exciting" stories in favor of being informative?

outsider
outsider

@DonQuixotic 

Again. 

But he'll be back. 

He can't quit us. 

He needs us. 


In that stalker way.. 

Sue_N
Sue_N

Well, 15 million and one. Reason #1 being Occupy really does believe in making things better for 99 percent, as opposed to just screwing over anybody who isn't them.

forgottenlord
forgottenlord

@mantisdragon91

Well, I thought that was a given, but he's not my creation so that's not what I was referring to.

EDIT: Seriously - whenever he gets flummoxed, he goes back to the start and just digs in.  Kinda reminds you of "I'm sorry, my answers are limited.  You must ask me the correct questions"

MrObvious
MrObvious

@fitty_three @MrObvious 

I don't care. I'm a end game type of guy. I want a better system then they have in France. For us citizens. That's the end game. 100k is towards that. Borderline Colli of course see the issue, not the solution. He rather keep the broken system because he's 100 percent super perfect or he won't have it.

herp derp.

MrObvious
MrObvious

@collioure @MrObvious

You'd wish Media would highlight what it fixes

Thats NEWS because it solves something. What you ask for is herp derp. Not surprising.

outsider
outsider

@collioure @outsider  

Well, the basic premise - bear in mind i'm saying premise, not how it turned out - was that everyone who's being controlled by big business should put a stop to it. 

 An easy example is one you and i have debated in the past: For profit prisons. 

The corporations that have an interest in driving up clientele have an interest in over prosecuting for the sake of their bottom dollar. 

 Occupy was against things such as that. 

 

collioure
collioure

@outsider  

I never did understand what Occupy was all about.

I don't think they did either.

outsider
outsider

@collioure @Sue_N  

So, wanting to take care of the 99% equates to anarchy to you? 

Or were you being purposely obtuse?

Or maybe you thought you were being clever?


I"m really asking. Because that kind of ridiculousness would come from paulie. i didn't expect it from you, to be honest.

collioure
collioure

@Sue_N  

Sue, you never said you were an anarchist before.

collioure
collioure

@NP042 @forgottenlord  

I wasn't making the claim.

Third Grade was.

He didn't have a coherent argument.

NP042
NP042

@forgottenlord To keep piling on, his use of insults increases sharply whenever he's backpedaling, as does the level of condescension.  Like, how dare we question what he's saying and how do we have the nerve to disagree with him?  And never anything to say why we might be wrong, simply that we are and that should be taken as fact.

fitty_three
fitty_three

@NP042  

He did that with me about the black community.  He never linked to his claims, even after I provided along with Mantis several links backed by some 235 references, 18 links, and 10 further reading suggestions among them.

NP042
NP042

@forgottenlord It's not even that.  It's the fact that he does that while expecting others to support his position.


Just look at yesterday's "discussion" on municipalities paying for sports stadiums; he made his claims but then complained when no one else provided the supporting evidence.

mantisdragon91
mantisdragon91

@forgottenlord He reminds me of when we outsourced our client support to a Philippine call center and when ever they reached the last option on their flow chart they would go back to the top of given anything different from the menu tree.

collioure
collioure

@MementoMori  

The pharmacy co-pays vary according to what they treat, I believe.  My heart meds have no co-pay except the .50€ fee.  However, allergy pills have a 65% co-pay.

collioure
collioure

I talked to him on Monday;  He took such good care of me that I wanted to invite him to dinner with his new wife, but he was still really weak.  I think he has more stents than Cheney.

collioure
collioure

@MementoMori  

I know that too, but I did not think it worth mentioning.

My primary doctor just retired and I had to file the papers for the new one.

MementoMori
MementoMori

@collioure @MrObvious @fitty_three

"We have a lot of co-pays and they are increasing.  That's about all I know. "

Really?

Finally, to counter the rise in health-care costs, the government has installed two plans, (in 2004 and 2006), which require insured people to declare a referring doctor in order to be fully reimbursed for specialist visits, and which installed a mandatory co-pay of 1 € (about $1.45) for a doctor visit, 0,50 € (about 80¢) for each box of medicine prescribed, and a fee of 16–18 € ($20–25) per day for hospital stays and for expensive procedures.*

For what it's worth, collie, I travel abroad a lot for work, including France, and know quite a few people who live there and elsewhere in the EU. Complaints about co-pays I have not heard.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Health_insurance#France

fitty_three
fitty_three

@MrObvious

@collioure says a lot about things he knows nothing about.  He is as simple as paulejb: all one needs to know is what Obama's position is on anything and he'll be at the opposite end screaming "foul".

Expecting him to use actual critical thinking and Occam's razor, let alone actualy consider real solutions is like asking a slug to speak French.

Oh, wait....

collioure
collioure

@MrObvious @fitty_three  

A better  system than we have here in France?

I'll have to wait for the comparisons to be published.

We have a lot of co-pays and they are increasing.  That's about all I know.

NP042
NP042

@MrObvious 

I wish I could decide what news is and isn't important for everyone.

I also wish I was a millionaire, had a sweet sports car, and a vacation home somewhere in the Caribbean, pilot's license optional.

MrObvious
MrObvious

@collioure @MrObvious

I didn't.

I don't live there any more.

I would like the press to be honest and fair. 

The news is 106K enrollees.  Period.

Sigh

Poor France. Better them then us I guess.

collioure
collioure

@MrObvious @collioure  

I didn't.

I don't live there any more.

I would like the press to be honest and fair. 

The news is 106K enrollees.  Period.