10 things to know today

Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Tuesday:
AP Wire
Dec 10, 2013

1. MASSIVE TURNOUT FOR MANDELA SERVICE

Nearly 100 world leaders and tens of thousands of South Africans of all races and backgrounds pay respects to "a global icon of forgiveness."

2. HOW TECH COMPANIES ARE TRYING TO LIMIT SURVEILLANCE

In an open letter, a coalition of Silicon Valley giants like Google, Apple and Yahoo say internet spying threatens the industry's livelihood.

3. WHO'S GETTING RICH IN AMERICA

New survey data finds 20 percent of adults, largely older professionals, working married couples and more educated singles, become affluent for part of their lives.

4. CONGRESS VOTES TO RENEW BAN ON PLASTIC GUNS

Tougher restrictions, like requiring metal parts that cannot be removed, are defeated by Republicans.

5. WHY 18 L.A. DEPUTIES ARE FACING FEDERAL CHARGES

A U.S. attorney says they engaged in corruption and civil rights abuses, falsified reports, and tried to block FBI probe of the nation's largest jail system.

6. WHAT THE NATION'S TOP MILITARY LEADER WANTS

Army Gen. Martin Dempsey pleads with Congress to complete the defense bill before year's end.

7. VETERAN SAYS N. KOREA STATEMENT WAS COERCED

Former U.S. Army Lieutenant Merrill Newman, 85, says he was threatened with a lengthy prison sentence if he did not apologize for killing North Koreans during the war.

8. STUDY: 1 IN 5 LUNG TUMORS HARMLESS

Even though only cancerous tumors were considered, the analysis suggests the world's No. 1 cause of cancer deaths isn't as lethal as doctors once thought.

9. ANTARCTICA'S DEEP-FREEZE RECORD

NASA satellite data reveals the icy continent hit -135.8 degrees in August 2010.

10. LONGTIME RIVALS COME TOGETHER IN BASEBALL HALL OF FAME

With a combined eight World Series titles and more than 7,500 wins, Joe Torre, Tony La Russa and Bobby Cox, who spent decades trying to beat each other, make it to Cooperstown together.

Comments

Vladtheimp

11. Obama Administration sells last of its GM stock - taxpayers lose $15 BILLION overall from the auto industry bailout, adding to money GM can spend creating jobs in China.

"Saving General Motors from bankruptcy was among President Obama’s most frequently cited achievements when he ran for re-election last year. Democrats everywhere touted the company’s revival as proof of the 2009 bailout’s wisdom. That was then. Now, Obama has quietly released the auto manufacturer from a bailout requirement that it increase its production in the U.S. Instead, GM is spending billions of dollars building up its production capacity in ... China." http://washingtonexaminer.com/ex...

Lanivan

11. Although I am never happy when taxpayers lose any money, I am gratified to know the loss overall from Obama's successful choice of an auto bailout of GM and Chrysler and subsequent strengthening of said companies rather than sitting back and allowing bankruptcy liquidation to occur, causing mass unemployment during a severe financial and economic recession, is a mere $15 billion. That's $9 billion less than the vainglorious government hostage-taking and shutdown, that produced nothing of value except damage to the economy of $24 billion+.

Having said that, I quote the following: "Treasury Secretary Jacob J. Lew said the government sold the last of what was once a 60 percent stake in G.M. Taxpayers lost about $10 billion on their $49.5 billion investment in the Detroit automaker. “With the final sale of G.M. stock, this important chapter in our nation’s history is now closed,” Mr. Lew said. In all, taxpayers have ended up in the black on the crisis-related bailouts, Treasury officials said. It has recovered $433 billion from the Troubled Asset Relief Program after initially investing about $422 billion.

And GM had better increase investments in China, right along with other auto manufacturers, such as BMW and Volkswagon. It's becoming a growing and strong market for autos, especially hybrids and other fuel-efficient cars. And GM has increased production in the US, with steady sales growth within the last consecutive 15 months.

Gee, Vlad - I'm almost getting a vibe that you are advocating for a more communist/micro-manage-style government!

Goyo

I guess Vlad would rather have had a total GM collapse so we could send ALL the automobile manufacturing jobs somewhere, anywhere else where they would safe from Obama. I'm sure that would have worked out well for Michigan, the US and Vlad hiding out in his basement.

Lanivan

Vlad has a right to his opinions, Goyo. The auto bailout was a massive government-managed undertaking, involving billions of dollars, affecting millions of people, and thousands of jobs - it was a highly risky choice, but the domino effect of a liquidation bankruptcy would have been profound. In many ways, Obama was left with little to no choice.

The bailout was controversial and conservatives still argue against it on principle. But there was virtually no private sector financing available in 2009, and without that financing, the US auto industry, including Ford, would have collapsed and wrought damage from which we would still be shoveling. Sometimes principles have to be replaced with pragmatism - but I bet Vlad would argue with that.

Vladtheimp

Thanks for allowing that I have a right to opinions. The facts are that you champion lawbreaking by Obama to achieve a result that you want - the rule of law be dam#ed. Instead of filing for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy as virtually every airline, Macy's, K-Mart and countless other companies have gone through without liquidation, the Obama Administration, contrary to law, combined a phony bankruptcy with a bailout. GM would not have been liquidated at the cost of hundreds of thousands of jobs, the company would have been restructured and union contracts possibly re-negotiated to permit the company to prosper (including the union Cadillac health plans).

Under a legal bankruptcy proceeding (1) the government would NOT have screwed the secured creditors while giving the unsecured union pension plans 40 cents on the dollar - the exact opposite of a legal bankruptcy; (2) the secured creditors of GM would NOT have been treated better than the secured creditors of Chrysler; (3) Obama could NOT have gone on TV and called the secured creditors who balked at getting screwed "profiteers" for not taking the same haircut as others, except, of course, for the unions who got Rogaine instead of a haircut; (4) the government could NOT have closed dealerships based on the politics of the owners; and (5) the non-union employees of Delphi would NOT have been screwed by Obama. I'll stop there, but there are many other consequences of Obama's illegality.

You do have quite a sense of humor, quoting Jack Lew on the wonderfulness of the bailout - he of all people should know since he received over $900,000 from Citibank after it received millions in TARP bailout money - nice work if you can get it.

I'm glad you favor GM's competition with other auto companies in China but I'm less clear about why you apparently agree it was appropriate for Obama to waive the promises GM made regarding the number of vehicles it would produce in the United States as part of its bailout, numbers that it never made in any year, which would then be used to expand its China operations. Oh, how could I forget? Waivers, exemptions, back room deals - they're all part of the Obama experience.

I wrote this before I saw your reply above - don't mean to be personally harsh, as you recognize some of the problems of the auto bailout.

Lanivan

The situation was too dire, there was neither private money nor interest in financing anywhere in the land, and the auto industry contributed a significant amount (3.6% at the time of the bailout) to the total US GDP output to allow for a Chapter 11 reorganization. Liquidation would have been the outcome without the bailout, no matter how you want to part it.

You are very wrong by stating that I champion lawlessness - a petty and inaccurate claim if there ever was one. But I am a pragmatist who appreciates pragmatism in others. Obama and his team made the right decision, and those who can't or won't think outside their rigid ideologies to acknowledge this should question why.

Lanivan

President Obama's eulogy at Nelson Mandela's funeral:

Using Mr. Mandela’s clan name, Mr. Obama declared: “It took a man like Madiba to free not just the prisoner, but the jailer as well; to show that you must trust others so that they may trust you; to teach that reconciliation is not a matter of ignoring a cruel past, but a means of confronting it with inclusion, generosity and truth. He changed laws, but also hearts.”

The entire speech: http://blackamericaweb.com/19443...

Vladtheimp

I can't see where Obama praised Madiba for his support of voter identification in South Africa to combat election fraud. I guess I also missed his reference to Madiba being a member of the Communist Central Committee there.

Lanivan

I can just hear it...mumble, mumble, "Narcissist in Chief", mumble,....

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-...

Vladtheimp

Oh my, you have no idea how funny that is - Narcissist-in-Chief made to sit in the corner by the Wookie. As Paul Harvey would say, "And now, the rest of the story" http://www.freerepublic.com/focu...

And posing for selfies at a funeral - how classy!

Lanivan

Well, maybe. I think it's kinda cute, but that doesn't fit the narrative. Neither does this - gee, Laura - loosen up!

https://twitter.com/goldietaylor...

Vladtheimp

Whatever floats your boat, but I can only imagine the Left's response if Bush were goofing at Mandela's funeral. On the other hand, if you're going to blow $5 Million taxpayer dollars on a funeral, you might as well have some fun, while creating a media inspired diversion from Obamacare, the economy, your terrible poll numbers, Benghazi, the IRS Scandal, and Fast & Furious, all the while doing the one thing you do really well - reading from a Teleprompter.

Lanivan

Wow. I never dreamed that when I saw the photo, thought of you, and linked it for a bit of whimsy that it would illicit such a vituperative response. I remember Bush goofing around all the time, hugging Angela and Vlad (no-not you), etc. The shots of Obama didn't divert a thing - they provided yet another reason for the right wing to scrape and scratch to find something, anything!, to create a crisis, brouhaha, or a reason to impeach. My take? Obama is a drop dead handsome man, and was having a good time with some VIP's after giving a eulogy that will go down in history, sitting next to his beloved wife who, at that moment, could have been thinking about something as harmless as her girls back home. Did you see the photos of her laughing along with the others? I didn't think so.

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