Morning Reads

Happy Friday morning! Welcome to the last stop before the weekend. Here are some of the stories we’re reading around the office on this sad morning…

RIP, Madiba –> Paul Taylor, who was the WaPo’s South African bureau chief in the early 1990s, recounts Nelson Mandela’s brilliant use of the moral high ground. ALSO: MoJo has excerpts from a powerful 1964 speech Mandela believed would be his last. ALSO, TOO: Salon’s Joan Walsh doesn’t want you to forget that most of the American right supported Apartheid and considered Mandela to be a terrorist. AND FINALLY: Don’t miss Bill’s 1991 discussion with Mandela about overcoming hatred and the power of nonviolence.

Surprisingly good –> Dean Baker: jobs report shows that the economy added 200K jobs for the second month in a row, as unemployment rate declines by 0.3% to hit a 5-year low.  BUT: EPI’s Elise Gould notes that the number of long-term unemployed keeps growing.

Are they serious? –> As Sen. Patty Murray and Rep. Paul Ryan try to hammer out a budget deal, Sahil Kapur reports for TPM that some House conservatives are balking, which could lead to yet another government shutdown.

Freed –> Rolling Stone’s Matt Taibbi reports that a batch of Wall Street crooks who had been convicted for fraud were quietly freed last week on a technicality.

Kentucky –> Governor Steve Beshear calls out Sen. Mitch McConnell for misleading about Obamacare’s popularity in the state. MEANWHILE: The Nation’s Bill Greider notes that one Dem lawmaker is trying to make it easier for states to adopt single-payer systems.

Stink-tanks –> The Guardian’s Ed Pilkington and Suzanne Goldenberg continue their excellent reporting on dark money groups with a story about the State Policy Network’s concerted effort to undermine workers’ rights, public education and health care one state at a time.

Transparency –> Josh Gerstein reports for Politico that Obama plans tighter rules for NSA surveillance. MEANWHILE: AJA’s Jamie Tarabay notes that more leakers have been prosecuted under the Espionage Act under this administration than all others combined.

Not so smart –> Jonathan Turley writes that the Mexican thieves who stole several barrels of highly radioactive Cobalt-60 are probably going to die from exposure. Mexican authorities are recovering the toxic substance.

No, you’re out of order! –> Democratic Rep. Jared Polis flipped out on the House floor during an impassioned speech about how our broken immigration system is tearing families apart. Pete Kasperowicz reports for The Hill.

Gun-nuts go on offense –> TNR‘s Adam Winkler reports that they’re up in arms after the NFL upheld its policy of not accepting advertising from weapons manufacturers.

What else is going on? Let us know in the comments!

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