The New York Times's Charles Blow details "How Expensive It Is to Be Poor." Long story short: a lot of folks work but don't make enough money to get out of poverty; poor folks spend a bigger slice of their income in taxes, transportation, and fines for minor infractions of the law than rich folks do; and poor folks have far less access to banks than others and thus pay a lot of money in check-cashing fees and money order fees, and it's a lot tougher to get credit if you can't get a bank to serve you. If you find you can't relate, you might do better considering yourself blessed than finding fault with others who can relate.
Remember the "zombie cookies" we talked about last week, the ones you can't really delete from your computer, tablet, or smartphone? Well, after ProPublica reported on that last week, the corporation that makes those cookies has said it'll stop using them by early next month. Did they finally figure out how stupid they sounded when they said "clearing cookies is not a reliable way for a user to express their desire not to receive tailored advertising"? Sometimes it's actually a blessing when corporate executives and/or their PR hacks are so rock stupid.
Katherine McFate at the Center for Effective Government tells us that Rep. Van Hollen's bill resuscitating the long-dead "Robin Hood" tax on Wall Street transactions doesn't go far enough -- that it would spend the $100 billion or so it would take in every year on tax cuts for working folks, rather than on infrastructure repair. Of course I'd rather assess a much higher Robin Hood tax (1%, versus Van Hollen's 0.1%), and while I don't generally like to earmark revenue hikes to particular initiatives, I think we ought to be spending more on infrastructure improvements anyway -- for at least as long as interest rates are going to be close to zero.
The incomparable Duncan Black suggests that coverage of the recent huge drop in oil prices hasn't happened very much from an oil consumer's point of view. Personally I think the media coverage has been too apocalyptic, and likely because a Democrat's President (if oil prices had dropped under George W. Bush, the "liberal" media would be doing the helicopter dance in front of us as we speak), but it hadn't even occurred to me that the human interest aspect had been strangely missing from media coverage.
Finally, a Muslim group holds a conference entitled "Stand With the Prophet Against Terror and Hate," and find themselves confronted by some of the, er, classiest counter-protestors ever. But there's a silver lining: the next time any of these morons holding up signs saying "you are not Americans" complain that TEH MUZLIMZ NEVER SPEAK OUT AGAINSTZ TEH TERRORISTZ!!!!!, we get to remind them of how bratty they acted when Muslims did just that.