Donald Trump wins Republican Presidential primary in South Carolina. Jeb Bush finishes fourth, and then suspends his campaign, suggesting that you can count a bastard out if he gets outshined by an even bigger bastard. One quibble: the suggestion, in the above link and elsewhere, that it's somehow surprising that Mr. Trump's fight with the Pope didn't hurt him with religious voters in South Carolina. I mean, to a lot of these voters, Catholics aren't even Christians, and they get into (or long to get into!) swordfights over Who's More Christian just like Donald Trump did all the time.
Ho hum, President Obama's budget would let corporations "bring back" overseas profits and pay taxes on those profits at far lower rates than they otherwise would. I'd say, "well, it's a good thing Republicans won't even consider Mr. Obama's budget," but it'd be just like Congress to lift out all the bad parts of that budget proposal and pass them. Indeed, Congress has tried to pass this particular dung nugget already. Remember when they called this sort of thing a tax "amnesty," before the nativists made amnesty a bad word. Then it was a tax "holiday," and now it's a "transition tax." Next year they'll call it something even more absurd, like "stimulus" or "job creation."
Abby Jackson, writing in Business Insider, discusses a study provocatively entitled "Are Charter Schools the New Subprime Loans?" Turns out it's only a metaphor -- financial bubbles result from the multiple stakeholders (and their conflicting interests) loans now have, whereas charter school failures often result from the multiple authorizers (and their conflicting interests) they have -- but it's an apt metaphor nonetheless, and suggests solutions in both realms are possible, if our politicians only have the will to do the people's will.
Robert Naiman reminds us that Hillary Clinton, as President Obama's first Secretary of State, "enabled" (his word! My efforts are working!) the coup that ousted President Zelaya from office in 2009. How? By suggesting that, well, maybe a coup didn't really take place (because that's so hard to figure out!) and that the State Department needed to study the matter -- when her own emails reveal that she already knew a coup had taken place. It's hard out there for a pimp. And it's even harder out there for good Hondurans, thanks to Mrs. Clinton.
If you're in the mood for some serious dystopianism, Morgane Remy's got it, as she posits a world where insurance corporations can use all the data the internet collects on you as leverage to "control your lifestyle." No sense arguing that inductive reasoning doesn't have absolute predictive power, because that's not how insurance corporations think -- and I presume if you opt out of the "Internet of Things," insurance corporations will just charge you a lot more for not giving them enough data to work with. Maybe we need single-payer for all kinds of insurance -- it won't make the Big Brother problem go away, but it'll make it more controllable by the people.
Finally, if you're not in a dystopian mood, Jasleena Grewal, writing at Yes! magazine, writes about how a community vegetable garden in the "Banglatown" section of East London can "create a space where people could re-form social networks." A real social network, we are reminded, occurs among folks who live close to each other and run into each other regularly without planning to, and needs a place where folks feel comfortable enough to get to know each other, and the garden not only provides a place for folks of differing backgrounds to speak the "universal language" of growing vegetables, but also allows them to eventually take their plots away from the space and create a new space where they can teach the lessons they've learned to others. I wish the Nomadic Community Garden, and all its offspring, the best of luck.