Monday, April 23, 2012

Mitt Romney: The Vladimir Putin of Private Equity? (Link Round-Up 4/23/12)

Half of young adults are jobless or underemployed
About 1.5 million, or 53.6 percent, of bachelor's degree-holders under the age of 25 last year were jobless or underemployed, the highest share in at least 11 years. In 2000, the share was at a low of 41 percent, before the dot-com bust erased job gains for college graduates in the telecommunications and IT fields. 
Out of the 1.5 million who languished in the job market, about half were underemployed, an increase from the previous year.
US to sanction authoritarian regimes that censor internet for protesters
Obama signed an executive order authorizing the new category of sanctions on Sunday. The tougher penalties are aimed in particular at those who facilitate human rights abuses in Syria and Iran, said the official, who requested anonymity because the official was not authorized to discuss the order publicly.
Scientists want no-fishing zone in the Arctic (in area that has yet to be over-fished)
Recent Arctic sea ice retreat during the summer months have opened up some of the waters that fall outside of the exclusive economic zones of the nations that circle the polar ocean. In all, more than 2.8 million square kilometres make up these international waters, which some scientists say could be ice free during summer months within 10 to 15 years. Although industrial fishing hasn’t yet occurred in the northernmost part of the Arctic, the lack of regulation may make it an appealing target for international commercial fishing vessels.
The Jim Crow Museum of Racist Memorbilia to open April 26 
He told us that a lot of professional middle-class blacks in those days always traveled with a chauffer's hat. The reason: If they were driving a nice new car through a small southern town, they didn't want police officers, or any other whites, to know the car belonged to them. 
I remember that story so vividly. No object has any meaning other than what we assign to it. But that was an incredible meaning to assign to an object that, on the surface, had little to do with racism.
The hard fight for human rights and free speech in Saudi Arabia
Making use of social-media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook, religious hard-liners have launched an online inquisition against those who dare to think freely. In a frightening development, a judge and some clerics demanded in February that I be given the death penalty for allowing guests at my salon to speak freely. For the time being, I remain free. 
But many young Saudis insist on freedom of expression and belief, and they are proud of their values of justice, tolerance and human rights. They give me hope. Our resolve is unshakable, whatever difficulties lie ahead.
Mitt "Parasite" Romney's Bain Capital track record: making millions, regardless of performance
So in January, The Wall Street Journal did its best to piece together Romney's track record, reviewing 77 investments made under his direction. It turned out that nearly one in three of the companies experienced severe financial trouble. One in five wound up in bankruptcy. 
The more telling figure: Of Romney's 10 biggest moneymakers, he ultimately destroyed four of them, leaving bankruptcy judges to clean up the mess. 
As Foster sees it, Romney was an early pioneer of gaming the system. It would take another decade before large banks used many of the same principles to detonate the mortgage industry.
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