Patrick Cockburn sees, in ISIS, "the Birth of a Terrifying New State" and a "counter-revolutionary caliphate," one that could take over all of Iraq and Syria. Not because "we didn't do enough to stop it," but because, frankly, we did too much -- when foreign nations interfere in your affairs for decades on end (and that includes helping install the hated Saddam Hussein), the locals remember forever, and so would we, if it were us. Bush's Folly could wind up allying us with Iran against ISIS -- which irony wouldn't be unprecedented in human history, I suppose.
International Franchise Association sues Seattle over its phased-in $15/hour minimum wage, claiming unfair treatment because the law classifies franchises as big businesses and thus requires them to phase in the money faster. Maybe Mr. Clement's assertion that the law violates the U.S. Constitution's Commerce Clause could work in the IFA's favor, but folks who think we should treat big businesses exactly as we'd treat small businesses confuse symmetry with fairness, and no reasonable person should think the nearest McDonald's is a "small business" just because its owners have driven a Mack truck through a loophole in the law.
The great-granchildren of Anna Short Harrington, who played Aunt Jemima in Quaker Oats promotional materials for decades, have filed a class-action lawsuit against Quaker Oats and three affiliated corporations, saying they exploited Ms. Harrington and thus cheated her descendents of royalties for over 60 years. Good luck to them -- you know Quaker's going to lose (though maybe not pay $2 billion plus punitives) because all their PR hacks can think of to say is "(p)eople associate The Aunt Jemima Brand with warmth, hospitality and comfort, and we stand by this heritage as well as the ways in which we do business." Warmth, hospitality, and comfort -- all things we associate with wage theft.
Federal investigators find a "a systematic breakdown" in how two Virginia schools "employed restraints and seclusions" -- as in, one of them used "last-resort" disciplinary tactics on nearly 40 percent of its students. Those ready to squeal that TODAYZ KIDZ ARE OUTZ UV TEH CONTROLZ!!!!! would need to explain how using "last-resort" tactics nearly half the time isn't an indication that the school has no idea how to keep its students focused and in line.
Finally, Standard and Poor's becomes the second national ratings agency to downgrade the Kansas's credit (from AA+ to AA). They follow Moody's, which downgraded Kansas in April. Both agencies cite the Kansas government's unwillingness to cut spending as well as its mania for cutting taxes, noting that Kansas's tax cuts will actually become steeper after 2015. While it's tempting to dump on Sam Brownback some more -- after all, these tax cuts are all part of his big "experiment" -- I doubt future Kansas Republicans will abandon their tax-cutting mania; they'll just argue that Mr. Brownback somehow did it wrong, because of his Brownbacky Brownbackness, I guess, and then try it again once they get the chance. I'd be happy to be wrong about that. But I doubt I am.