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Open thread for night owls: Excerpts from the August Harper's Index

Does freaking out over losing your phone count as nomophobia?

Here are some excerpts from Harper’s Index for August: 

  • Rank of North Korea’s nuclear program among South Koreans’  greatest sources of anxiety: 6
  • Of air pollution: 1
  • Estimated additional rent paid by New Yorkers in 2016 because of Airbnb: $616,743,319
  • Estimated percentage of homeless people in New York City who are unsheltered: 6
  • Of homeless people in Los Angeles: 75
  • Percentage of US couples with an annual income of less than $75,000 who are “very happy” with their sex life: 46
  • Of couples with an annual income of more than $200,000: 65
  • Percentage of Alabamians who oppose gay marriage: 51
  • Number of other states in which a majority of residents oppose it: 0
  • Percentage of US public-school teachers who spend their own money on school supplies: 94
  • Average amount a teacher spends each school year: $479
  • Percentage change since 2008 in the average US public-school teacher’s salary: –4
  • Minimum number of scientific papers published on nomophobia, the fear of not having access to cellular service: 55



“It had long been true, and prisoners knew this better than anyone, that the poorer you were the more likely you were to end up in jail. This was not just because the poor committed more crimes. In fact, they did. The rich did not have to commit crimes to get what they wanted; the laws were on their side. But when the rich did commit crimes, they often were not prosecuted, and if they were they could get out on bail, hire clever lawyers, get better treatment from judges. Somehow, the jails ended up full of poor black people.” 
~~Howard Zinn, A People’s History of the United States (1980)




On this date at Daily Kos in 2009Sotomayor hearings set to begin:

All Congress-watching eyes are expected to turn today to the Senate Judiciary Committee, as they begin their consideration of the nomination of Judge Sonia Sotomayor to be next Associate Justice of the Supreme Court. And the Committee, aware of the intense interest, will be live streaming video of the hearing, which they’re wisely making available in blog-embeddable format. So that’s exciting in itself. They know where the interest lies.

Thinking of popping some popcorn and watching the proceedings? If it’s Sotomayor you want to hear from, make sure you get lunch first. And maybe a nap. Because although the hearings are expected to be gaveled into session at 10 a.m., the first order of business is opening statements. From the Senators. Nineteen of them. For up to ten minutes apiece. Plus statements of introduction from home state Senators Chuck Schumer and Kirstin Gillibrand.

That’s Washington for you. Three to four hours of opening statements—plus a lunch break—before the person you’re supposed to be talking about even gets to say anything. And then, once she makes her own opening statement, they’ll adjourn for the day. It will take an entire day to “open” things with statements. You want to see someone ask a question? Come back tomorrow.

On today’s Kagro in the Morning show, back when the 13th was a Thursday: Trump toddled off to France. Greg Dworkin caught us up on Treasoncare’s dwindling prospects, the bottomless pit of Kushner & Sessions’ memory loss, Don Jr.’s first Time cover & his corroboration of TPPT (wink, wink).

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