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The Testament of Mary

By Colm Toibin

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Colin Powell Talks GOP Racism, Paul Krugman Blasts Jon Stewart, and More

Posted on Jan 13, 2013

Cash Out: The Treasury Department has decided against minting a $1 trillion platinum coin to deal with the ongoing fight over the debt ceiling. A key reason behind the decision was that the Federal Reserve would not accept the coin, making it—in the end—utterly worthless. “Neither the Treasury Department nor the Federal Reserve believes that the law can or should be used to facilitate the production of platinum coins for the purpose of avoiding an increase in the debt limit,” Treasury spokesman Anthony Coley explained. (Read more)

Krugman vs. Stewart: New York Times columnist Paul Krugman slammed “Daily Show” host Jon Stewart in a Web exclusive on ABC News on Sunday, excoriating the host for mocking the idea of minting a $1 trillion coin as a solution to fixing the debt ceiling. Krugman has been a staunch advocate of minting the coin. “Obviously neither [Stewart] nor his staff did even five minutes of looking at the financial blogs. Lots of people think it’s a bad idea. Lots of people think it’s a good idea. But it’s not just, ‘Oh, those idiots,’ ” Krugman said, adding that “The idea is that the show is like an especially good episode of the roundtable on ‘This Week’, but in the form of jokes. But when he just turns it into dumb, ‘I don’t know nothing, but those people look dumb to me,’ he’s ruining his brand.” (Read more)

Gregory Cleared: “Meet the Press” host David Gregory will not be charged for brandishing an ammunition clip on the NBC News program last month during an interview with NRA Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre. Washington, D.C., Attorney General Irvin B. Nathan said his office would not file charges against Gregory because it “would not promote public safety in the District of Columbia, nor serve the best interests of the people.” (Read more)

Immigration Action: President Obama will push Congress to pass a comprehensive overhaul of the country’s immigration system within the next few months. Among the expected proposals is a pathway to citizenship for the roughly 11 million undocumented immigrants in the U.S. Obama is expected to lay out the plan soon, possibly during his State of the Union speech next month. (Read more)

Another Bush Branch: Like there haven’t been enough George Bushes—George Prescott Bush, Jeb’s son, is the latest in the clan to consider a run for political office. The third George Bush says he may seek to become the next Texas land commissioner, but will not formally make an announcement until Rick Perry decides whether to run for governor again. There has been some speculation that Prescott Bush may even challenge Perry for that post. (Read more)

Video of the Day: Does the Republican Party have a racism problem? Yes, according to former Secretary of State Colin Powell, who said on “Meet the Press” on Sunday that there is “a dark vein of intolerance” within the GOP. He added: “What do I mean by that? I mean by that that they still sort of look down on minorities.”

—Posted by Tracy Bloom.

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