The BBC's Jane Wakefield wonders if the next industrial revolution will be a "makers" revolution. Don't anyone go thinking this is about Ayn Rand -- it's just about folks being able to use 3-D printers, along with crowdsourcing and internet research, to be able to manufacture, at least on a small scale, things that could change how we view the world. Could be exciting, and I'm pleased that big corporations are pooping themselves at the thought, but call me when 3-D printers are able to make washable underwear or oven-safe plates.
Not that you didn't already suspect this, but a number of reputable sources find our Ongoing Economic Armageddon at least partly behind increases in suicide rates for Americans aged 35 to 64. I don't know that putting banksters in jail would lower the rate all that much, not that we shouldn't do that for other reasons. (The question of why baby boomers have a higher suicide rate generally is worth pursuing separately. I won't admit because they're spoiled as an answer.)
Reuters informs us that one reason garment industry tycoons in Bangladesh, the world's number two garment exporter, can treat their workers so badly is that these tycoons make up about ten percent of that nation's Parliament. One activist suggests that well over half of Parliament has some kind of tie to the garment industry. Remember all that bulldada last year about how we should have a President with "business experience"? Well, this is kinda the dark side of that.
Harold Meyerson (writing at The American Prospect) notes that one provision of the Affordable Care Act -- making employers of more than 50 pay for health insurance for any employee working 30 hours or more per week -- has already induced some employers (which include state and local governments) to cut their workers' hours to around 29 per week. There'll be a safety net of sorts (state or federal health care exchanges) for those folks, but still, lost hours means lost money. We should have a single-payer health care system to get around this problem, maybe? (Mr. Meyerson gets there, of course, noting that it's rather "arbitrary" to have a system where you almost have to get health care through your job.)
Ohio Tea Party leaders say they're so disgusted with Republicans that they might start fielding candidates of their own. "It remains uncertain," the Dispatch tells us, "just how much the Ohio GOP and its candidates could be hurt by an insurrection because it is difficult to assess the true strength of tea party groups." Well, of course it's "difficult to assess" the strength of groups called into being by corporate money and made up largely of folks who can barely articulate a coherent thought.
Finally, dig the pissing match Catholic League President Bill Donohue starts on Larry King Live over whether the boys molested by Catholic priests were "prepubescent" or not. Remember, gang: no ground is too small to claim, and no pitched battle too petty to fight, when you're always wrong about everything. And those kids were too young to consent to sex, regardless of what exact point oh, forget it, it's Bill Donohue.