This episode features a series of “shocking” revelations, that really shouldn’t be shocking at all.

The liberal magazine The Nation, after getting after other businesses to raise their pay, is finally going to pay their own interns the federal minimum wage. That’s great, right? More money into the economy? Except that they’re now going to hire fewer interns. Now who could have anticipated that?

A Daily Kos writer is peeved that she’ll have to pay huge premiums for a high deductible health insurance plan, thanks to ObamaCare(tm). Now who could have anticipated that?

The NSA, contrary to their own previous statements and those of the President, is actually collecting even more information on us than previously understood. Now who could…oh, you know the drill.

Mentioned links:

Liberal Mag Inadvertantly Proves Conservatives Right On Minimum Wage While Attacking Walmart

Argus Hamilton

Another rube wakes up

Lawmakers Probe Willful Abuses of Power by NSA Analysts

Episode 44, The One-Year Anniversary: What Edward Snowden’s Revelations Really Reveal About Government

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Show Transcript

The magazine The Nation is a liberal-leaning publication; that much is certain. What’s not so certain is whether or not they really understand the topics they cover.

Here’s a case in point. It recently asked it readers to sign an open letter to Wal-Mart demanding that they pay workers at least $12 an hour. However, another web site, ProPublica, reported, as good news, that, this fall, interns at the Nation Institute, who put out the magazine, will be paid minimum wage for the first time in the history of the 30-year-old program. Up until now they’d been paid at less than minimum wage, when all the while they railed against those who did just that.

But anyway, that’s good news, right? Those overworked interns will now get the federal minimum wage and have more to spend in our economy. Well, consider this. In a statement to ProPublica on the report, The Nation said that, “We are not yet certain how this will work out long term, but for the fall we are anticipating hiring ten interns rather than twelve.”

So they’re raising the pay, but hiring fewer workers in response. Wow, now who could have anticipated that?

Egypt spiraled out of control as Muslim Brotherhood rioters sacked Coptic Christian churches and looted stores. This time the White House didn’t blame it on an anti-Muslim video. Argus Hamilton says that this uprising has Muslim outrage over a rodeo clown written all over it.

Blogger Donald Sensing noted that someone writing at the very liberal Daily Kos website was rather irked that, due to ObamaCare, she’d wind up paying over $8000 a year for what she called “crappy, high-deductible insurance” in New York state. The writer notes, “This means we will all be required to pay steep premiums and deductibles but may not have the financial resources to actually access healthcare.”

You mean ObamaCare is not going to be the panacea its proponents claimed it would be? Color me meh.

She concludes , “I am reminded on days like today, that President Obama campaigned on the idea that people like me would see something like a $2500 reduction in health insurance costs. What was I thinking?” Don Sensing surmises that thinking didn’t enter into it. I’d say, wow, now who could have anticipated that?

A while back in episode 44 I gave my cautious approval to an NSA program that said it was just collecting phone call metadata; information about calls – like the phone numbers, and date & time – but not the calls themselves. We can get this same information about government phones, so keeping ours didn’t seem that big a deal. Still, it seemed a bit of overreach.

Well, we now have more information coming out of the NSA telling us that, well, they did make a few oopsies. They told Bloomberg News that, over the past decade, very rare instances of willful violations of NSA’s authorities have been found. Clever use of the passive voice there; no actual names of agents were mentioned. Another spokesman said that the actions were the work of overzealous NSA employees or contractors. Yeah, and just a few “overzealous” IRS workers in Cincinnati were responsible for the entire scandal of targeting conservatives.

Like most government wrongdoing, this is going to come out in dribs and drabs. Had it stopped with the revelation of phone call metadata, I could have been OK with it. But now we’re hearing about a few slipups here and later a few there.

I know, I know. Give government power and they’ll first take more, and then abuse it. Wow, now who could have anticipated that?

Filed under: Economics & TaxesGovernmentHealth CareMinimum WageSurveillance