Morning Reads

Good morning! Sorry it’s Monday. Here are some of the stories we’re reading this morning…

Shrinking –> Thom Shanker and Helene Cooper report for The New York Times that the Pentagon plans to shrink the size of the army to pre-World War II levels, and eliminate a new class of aircraft.

Fraud –> Bloomberg’s Christie Smythe reports that, according to several lawsuits, some of the biggest oil companies in the world conspired with Morgan Stanley to manipulate oil prices for over a decade.

Toxic water for thee –> Exxon Mobil is the country’s biggest natural gas producer, but its CEO is suing to stop a fracking project near his ranch. This prompted Forbes columnist Rick Ungar to accuse him of “exquisite hypocrisy.”

UAW’s long-shot –> At The Nation, John Nichols looks at the larger significance of UAW’s petition, filed on Friday, to get the recent vote at Volkswagen’s Tennessee plant overturned because of outside interference.

Propaganda –> Rosie Gray reports for Buzzfeed that “several conservative bloggers repeated talking points given to them by a proxy group for the Ukrainian government” — and some got paid.

Trapped –> At The New Republic, David Dayen argues that when millennials can’t move out of their parents’ homes, it’s a problem for the entire economy.

Bad diagnosis –> Dean Paton writes at Yes! about the “myth” behind public school failure — and the push for privatization.

15 yards –> The NFL is planning to institute a new penalty for using the “n-word” on the playing field. Catherine Thompson has the details at TPM.

Tackling inequality –> Some students and faculty at St. Mary’s College are trying to push for a policy limiting the president’s income to ten times that of the lowest-paid staffer. Ry Rivard reports for Inside Higher Ed.

Gun crazy –> A Florida judge ordered that several guns be returned to a blind man — with a previous history of gun violence — who shot and killed a friend and was then exonerated under the state’s Stand Your Ground Law. Scott Kaufman reports for The Raw Story.

And she better watch out for photon torpedoes –> George Takei says that he and other money-spending gays, lesbians and allies will boycott Arizona if Jan Brewer signs its LGBT Jim Crow law.

One more reason to hate them –> John Gravois reports for Pacific Standard that hand-made, artisanal toast is the “tip of the hipster spear” in San Francisco these days.

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