Search Results for State of the Union

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Scott Walker admits it: Former Wisconsin governor argues votes in metropolitan areas shoul...

Scott Walker admits it: Former Wisconsin governor argues votes in metropolitan areas shoul…Melissa Joskow / Media Matters In the wake of a Supreme Court decision that ruled partisan gerrymandering of voting districts is not in the high court’s purview, expect to hear more shameless and outlandish pro-gerrymandering commentary from antidemocratic conservative pundits.  On June 27, the Supreme Court issued a 5-4 decision in Rucho v. Common Cause and Lamone v. Benisek. In its majority opinion, the conservative wing of the bench said the court had no jurisdiction to review the constitutionality of partisan gerrymandering — when the majority party in a state legislature redraws voting districts to its own numerical advantage — because the issue is a political question.   Hours after the decision was released, former Republican Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker attempted to tout the supposed fairness of Wisconsin’s 2018 State Assembly elections in which Democrats captured just 36 of…

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Dwight Eisenhower’s Worst Nightmare Has Come True

Dwight Eisenhower’s Worst Nightmare Has Come TrueWhen, in his farewell address in 1961, President Dwight D. Eisenhower warned of the dangers of the “unwarranted influence” wielded by the “military-industrial complex,” he could never have dreamed of an arms-making corporation of the size and political clout of Lockheed Martin. In a good year, it now receives up to $50 billion in government contracts, a sum larger than the operating budget of the State Department. And now it’s about to have company. Raytheon, already one of the top five U.S. defense contractors, is planning to merge with United Technologies. That company is a major contractor in its own right, producing, among other things, the engine for the F-35 combat aircraft, the most expensive Pentagon weapons program ever. The new firm will be second only to Lockheed Martin when it comes to consuming your tax dollars — and it may end up even more powerful politically, thanks to President Trump’s fondness for hiring arms industry executives to run the national…

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City Dwellers Ignore Infrastructure at Their Peril

City Dwellers Ignore Infrastructure at Their PerilInfrastructure is everything you don’t think about. The roads you drive on. The rigs and refineries that turn fossil fuel into the gas that makes your car go. The electricity that powers the street lights and lamps that guide your way. All these technologies vanish into the oblivion of normalcy.Until they break. Then everyone notices.That’s what happened Saturday night in New York City when a power outage struck Midtown Manhattan, from Hell’s Kitchen north to Lincoln Center and from 5th Avenue west to the Hudson River. The blackout darkened the huge, electric billboards of Times Square, forced Broadway shows to cancel performances, and even disabled some subway lines.According to reports, the outage was caused by a transformer fire within the impacted region. Power was fully restored by early the following morning. It was not the first or the most severe blackout to hit the…

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Short Circuit: A Roundup of Recent Federal Court Decisions

Short Circuit: A Roundup of Recent Federal Court DecisionsPlease enjoy the latest edition of Short Circuit, a weekly feature from the Institute for Justice. New on the Short Circuit podcast: We make the stirring, strident claim that the Second Circuit was pretty much on the mark in its recent opinion finding a First Amendment problem with President Trump blocking critics on Twitter. Click here for iTunes. In 2018, President Trump issues three executive orders instructing the feds to, among other things, limit the time federal employees can spend working on union business on the taxpayer’s dime. A bevy of federal labor unions challenge the orders, arguing, among other things, that the President has no authority to issue executive orders related to federal labor relations and that the orders violate the First Amendment. D.C. Circuit: The claims must be presented to an administrative review board before they can be heard in court….

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Trump’s Reelection Could Spell the End of American Democracy

Trump’s Reelection Could Spell the End of American DemocracyIt’s often said that if Trump is reelected, it’ll be the end of democracy in America. But how could Trump get reelected, and how could democracy get wiped out in the USA? Turns out, there’s an actual project to rewrite our Constitution, turning America into a corporate-run oligarchy. They’d end the income tax, eliminate federal regulatory agencies like the EPA, end all labor protections (including laws against child labor), let states ignore anti-discrimination and other federal regulations, and impose term limits so the only “institutional memory” for legislatures will be the corporate lobbyists. All it needs to succeed—within just a few short years—is for Trump and the GOP to win big in 2020. And the prospects of that happening are going up every day. With a big Trump win will come a rewrite of our Constitution itself, if the billionaires funding it…

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The Global Data War Heats Up

The Global Data War Heats UpWorld leaders who gather in Osaka, Japan, for the G20 summit this week will begin a conversation on worldwide data governance—and though they are deeply divided on the question of who should control data, some nations could seek to devise a system that excludes China.Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who is hosting this year’s summit, says he sees data governance as a priority. Indeed, the fact that the internet has remained relatively global and open has enabled the growth of the digital economy. App stores on our phones, email accessible around the world, overnight shipping on our favorite goods, the sharing of news and medical research and stock information—they’re all part of this global connectivity. Underneath it lie data, 1s and 0s that form everything from bank ledgers to social-media posts. Exchanges of data between organizations (companies, universities, governments, etc.) across borders are what contribute…

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