New estimates from the Pew Hispanic Center find that the "number of children born to at least one unauthorized-immigrant parent in 2009 was 350,000, essentially the same as it was a year earlier." These children accounted for 8% of newborns in the U.S. from March 2009 to March 2010. But interestingly, only a fraction of the babies were born to parents who have recently arrived in the country -- running counter to an argument made by conservatives who want to do away with birthright citizenship.
61% of new illegal immigrant parents arrived in the country before 2004 and 30% arrived from 2004 to 2007. Just 9% arrived from 2008 to 2010. Conservatives have raised the specter of "anchor babies" in their arguments against birthright citizenship. State Legislators for Legal Immigration, a group which advocates changing the interpretation of the 14th amendment, has claimed that "hundreds of thousands of illegal aliens are crossing U.S. borders to give birth and exploit their child as an 'anchor baby.'" Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) has even claimed that some women come to the U.S. to have children with citizenship, only to raise them abroad and train them as terrorists.
Overall, the Pew Hispanic Center found the number of illegal immigrants living in the United States as of March 2010 was 11.2 million, practically unchanged from 11.1 million in 2009. The flat line follows two years of declines: the number peaked at 12 million in 2007, and was 11.6 million in 2008. The number of illegal immigrants in the workforce also held steady from 2009 to 2010.
The study found that the decrease in the overall number of illegal immigrants in the U.S. since 2007 appears to be tied to a fall in the number of Mexican illegal immigrants in the country. From 7 million in 2007, illegal immigrants from Mexico number 6.5 million today.
Since 2007, illegal immigrant populations have shrunk in Colorado, Florida, New York and Virginia -- and Arizona, Nevada and Utah when counted together. During the same period, there has been a rise in the combined illegal immigrant population of Louisiana, Oklahoma and Texas.
You can read the report here.
President Reagan's Solicitor General Charles Fried says the health care mandate, whether you agree with the policy or not, is obviously constitutional. [...]
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That's Kurt Waldheim on the left, in 1977, when he was UN secretary-general, a few years before all that Nazi unpleasantness came out. On the right is then-Egyptian President Anwar Sadat. And seen in-between them is Hosni Mubarak. There's another great[...]
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Okay, you'll enjoy this. South Dakota state Rep. Hal Wick (R) is pushing a state law mandating people buy firearms, a law he believes is patently unconstitutional, as a way of illustrating how the Health Care Reform mandate is unconstitutional. Then[...]
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Many of us in Rhode Island were glad to hear the news of Senator Whitehouse sponsoring legislation to help keep jobs in America, or at least reduce the monetary incentives for corporations to outsource their jobs to other countries. Senators Gillibrand and Schumer in New York also recently urged National Grid not to outsource IT jobs to other countries. But as I spent some time researching and trying to discern how many white collar jobs we have probably already lost in Rhode Island, and how many more we are likely to lose, I have to wonder if these efforts by our elected officials are going to be “too little and too late” to stem the tide of jobs abandoning our country.
Pretty much any corporation of any size in Rhode Island has begun to outsource some aspects of their work. Financial businesses in particular, of which we have several in Rhode Island, are heavily into outsourcing their jobs to developing nations, where wages are currently a fraction of what they are in the US. Last time I worked for a non-profit human services agency, they too were outsourcing their IT jobs to India. Anything to save a buck. Probably some of our government agencies are outsourcing their white collar jobs to other countries as well. I don’t have any direct information on that, but I wouldn’t be surprised. It seems to be all the rage these days.
As a therapist, I am well aware of the soaring number of unemployed people in our state. Right now it seems like about a third of my clients are either directly (they themselves are laid off) or indirectly (their parent or spouse is laid off) impacted by The Great Recession.
It’s not just Rhode Island that is experiencing this enormous job drain as companies set up shop in the developing world. From the AFL-CIO’s research on trends in offshoring:
Goldman Sachs estimates 400,000?600,000 professional services and information sector jobs moved overseas in the past few years, accounting for about half of the total net job loss in the sector over the period. A Deloitte Research survey found one-third of all major financial institutions are already sending work offshore, with 75 percent reporting they would do so within the next 24 months. A U.C. Berkeley study found 25,000 to 30,000 new outsourcing-related jobs advertised in India by U.S. firms in just one month in 2003.
Bank of America, another big Rhode Island employer, has moved a lot of jobs overseas and will continue to do so in 2011 according to this article:
Last year, it [Bank of America] added about 1,000 employees to its Asian, Latin American and African operations, and will continue to shift some of its current U.S. employees overseas in 2011.
I hear anecdotal information about CVS Caremark outsourcing jobs. I’m not sure if any of the layoffs of the last 150 people will result in more hires overseas. Seems likely.
So what can we the people do? If I was the George Soros of Rhode Island (which God knows I’m not) I would start a campaign to help people communicate their frustration about Rhode Island companies moving jobs overseas directly to our state and national delegations, so that these leaders could in turn put pressure on these companies to stop taking away the jobs that provide for Rhode Island’s middle class stability. Maybe this would be a worthwhile campaign for some of Rhode Island’s labor and progressive nonprofits. Before more jobs are moved away, we have a window of opportunity to use community and government leverage to say, “Save Our Jobs!”
This is a huge street in Chicago, busy as hell, 45 mph limit I believe, and it never closes. Check out this photo from today's blizzard.
(h/t Rex Wockner)
In January, Beck's eponymous talk show posted the steepest ratings declines for any cable news program. Glenn Beck averaged 1.8 million viewers, down 39% vs. January 2010. In 25-54, the drop was even bigger, 48%, to 397,000. Some of the losses could be explained by tough comparisons to last January, which was one of the highest-rated in Fox News' history, fueled largely by coverage of the Massachusetts governor race. Still, this is a very steep decline for Beck, who peaked at 2.8 million viewers in 2009, drawing more viewers than all of his cable news competitors combined [...]
As of Sept. 2010, 296 advertisers had asked not to be on Glenn Beck, up from 26 in August 2009.
New York University professor Rick Hills describes himself as a "registered Republican and outspoken conservative," but he maintains that the primary argument conservatives use against the mandate -- that it's unconstitutional to regulate economic inactivity by forcing people to buy insurance, as Judge Vinson ruled -- is bunk.
Hills frames the question this way: If the federal government can't tell people they don't have the right to refuse to buy insurance, then why was it okay for the federal government to regulate people's "pacifism," i.e., their refusal to fight in wars? Why is it okay for the government to regulate people's refusal to serve on juries?
"If you can regulate inaction to raise juries, and you can regulate inaction to raise an army, then why isn't there equally an implied power to conscript people to buy insurance, to serve the goal of regulating the interstate insurance market?" Hill asks.
And for conservatives, forcing people to fight their wars is very, very important.
I am quite sure that the health care mandate is constitutional.... My authorities are not recent. They go back to John Marshall, who sat in the Virginia legislature at the time they ratified the Constitution, and who, in 1824, in Gibbons v. Ogden, said, regarding Congress' Commerce power, 'what is this power? It is the power to regulate. That is -- to proscribe the rule by which commerce is governed.' To my mind, that is the end of the story of the constitutional basis for the mandate.
"The mandate is a rule -- more accurately, 'part of a system of rules by which commerce is to be governed,' to quote Chief Justice Marshall. And if that weren't enough for you -- though it is enough for me -- you go back to Marshall in 1819, in McCulloch v. Maryland, where he said 'the powers given to the government imply the ordinary means of execution. The government which has the right to do an act' -- surely, to regulate health insurance -- "and has imposed on it the duty of performing that act, must, according to the dictates of reason, be allowed to select the means." And that is the Necessary and Proper Clause."
"We have 54 planets in the habitable zone of their stars," Borucki says, referring to the temperate orbital zone around a star that would allow for the existence of liquid water on a planet. "One of them is 0.9 times the radius of the Earth, and four of them are less than two Earth radii." Any of those would be the most Earth-like world ever detected outside the solar system. What is more, some of the larger, more Jupiter-like planets Kepler is sniffing at in the habitable zone might have moons, and some of those satellites would themselves be potentially habitable. "It's sort of awesome," Borucki says of Kepler's haul. "The implications are that there are an awful lot of planets out there."
I assume this analysis doesn't even factor life that might be created in different environments than what we see here at earth. Heck, even on earth, the parameters of what life looks like keeps changing.
NASA-supported researchers have discovered the first known microorganism on Earth able to thrive and reproduce using the toxic chemical arsenic. The microorganism, which lives in California's Mono Lake, substitutes arsenic for phosphorus in the backbone of its DNA and other cellular components.
"The definition of life has just expanded," said Ed Weiler, NASA's associate administrator for the Science Mission Directorate at the agency's Headquarters in Washington. "As we pursue our efforts to seek signs of life in the solar system, we have to think more broadly, more diversely and consider life as we do not know it."
This finding of an alternative biochemistry makeup will alter biology textbooks and expand the scope of the search for life beyond Earth. The research is published in this week's edition of Science Express.
Then again, "inevitable" is not the best word to use this far out from an election. Perhaps the teabaggers will bail Nelson out by nominating Nebraska's version of Sharron Angle.
As Americans and the world are gripped by the ongoing crisis in Egypt, news organizations have devoted wall-to-wall coverage to the protests — that is, except for Fox News, which interrupted its news programing to bring viewers what amounted to an infomerical for a new product from Fox’s parent company, News Corp. This came at a critical moment in Egypt situation, as the protests in Cairo turned deadly.
But at 11:00 AM Eastern Time, while MSNBC and CNN ran breaking news alerts and reported live from Cairo, Fox and Fox Business reported live from the Guggenheim Museum in Manhattan to bring viewers the unveiling ceremony for News Corp latest product, an iPad newspaper called ?The Daily.? Fox News aired a full half hour of the promotional event, featuring NewsCorp chairman Rupert Murdoch giving a hard sell of his latest media foray.
At 11:30, Fox returned to its news converge of the winter storm devastating the Midwest, only to interrupt its programming once again a half hour later for a lengthy interview with Murdoch. Viewers were treated to Fox host Neil Cavuto tossing up softball questions about Murdoch’s business acumen and his bold new product for nearly 20 minutes before the news network finally returned to the news.
Watch a compilation of host Bill Hemmer awkwardly transitioning from the “historic” winter storm to the “history [making]” NewsCorp event, the event, and the interview:
A screen grab of MSNBC, CNN, and Fox at 11:12:
Even Cavuto couldn’t ignore the obvious conflict of interest of his “news” network pimping its parent company’s new product, but nonetheless, Cavuto reliably defended Fox and Murdoch:
We are continuing to monitor [Egypt] and I am already getting emails and bloggers saying ?you are only covering this because your boss is Rupert Murdoch.? That might have something to do with it, but this is a big event in and of itself how you look at news. I may remind those in news organizations that whenever Apple comes out with a product, whether they get top executives there or not, they seem to go full throttle on that product announcement because these tend to be cultural events that go beyond a given company.
Last November, the Washington Post’s ombudsman questioned whether the Post was “being aggressive enough in reporting on troubles confronting Kaplan,” a subsidiary of the Post’s parent company. The mere question of a conflict of interest was enough to earn criticism from the Post’s internal watchdog, as it should for any legitimate news organization.
Fox, however, is happy to run nearly an hour of explicit promotional programing with little news value for its parent company, anchored by its senior vice president for business news, while major events unfold at home and abroad — all without any hint of serious self-reflection.
Until he invited Dylan Ratigan on to muddy the waters, this segment on the Ed Show last night was a[...]
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