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Is Congress getting dumber, or just more plainspoken? (This post was prepared in collaboration with Dan Drinkard) Congress now speaks at almost a full grade level lower than it did just seven years ago, with the most conservative members of Congress speaking on average at the lowest grade level, according to a new Sunlight Foundation analysis of the Congressional Record using Capitol Words.

Is Congress getting dumber, or just more plainspoken?

Of course, what some might interpret as a dumbing down of Congress, others will see as more effective communications. Eric Cantor Meets Occupy Wall Street - The Encounter. We recently brought you Michele Bachmann’s encounter with some Occupiers at one of her campaign stops. Well, she wasn’t the only Republican to have an unofficial introduction to the Occupy Movement. At a recent speech at Rice University, Republican House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, had his first encounter too. As he stepped to the podium, Rice University students, in support of the Occupy Wall Street movement, began their “mic check” chant, coined by the Occupiers when they are about to announce their grievances publicly. Cantor fell in line and allowed the 99% to have their voices heard. Now, if only if he’d fall in line along with the House of Representatives, and do the work that the bottom 99% elected him to do, instead of for the top 1% that bought his loyalty and his votes. 14 total views, 3 views today.

One Year of Prison Costs More Than One Year at Princeton. The comparison between higher education spending and correction spending highlighted in the following chart is not perfect.

One Year of Prison Costs More Than One Year at Princeton

Universities have means to fund themselves; prisons rely on the government. So it makes some sense that a disproportional amount of money flows to the correction centers. Also, take note, comparing African Americans in college and African Americans in dorms is not completely fair. For one, college implies an 18-22 age range, and incarcerated adults can be of any age. Despite these shortcomings, this chart helps illustrate a large discrepancy in this country: America has the highest incarceration rate by population, but is only 6th in the world when it comes to college degrees.

Women bloggers call for a stop to 'hateful' trolling by misogynist men. Laurie Penny is one of a number of women writers who have decided to go public with their concerns.

Women bloggers call for a stop to 'hateful' trolling by misogynist men

Photograph: Guardian. The Koch Brothers - People & Power. By People & Power reporter Bob Abeshouse Charles and David Koch are each worth about $25bn, which makes them the fourth richest Americans.

The Koch Brothers - People & Power

American Nazi Party Endorses Occupy Wall Street‘s ’Courage,‘ Tells Members to Support Protests and Fight ’Judeo-Capitalist Banksters’ The Blaze has been reporting on the numerous incidents of anti-Semitism taking place during the ongoing Occupy Wall Street protests and similar demonstrations throughout the country.

American Nazi Party Endorses Occupy Wall Street‘s ’Courage,‘ Tells Members to Support Protests and Fight ’Judeo-Capitalist Banksters’

Now, it appears the movement has been given the nod of approval from the American Nazi Party itself. Occupy Wall Street (and Beyond) Analysis: The Tea Party Is Outraged, Mocking...and Worried. Occupy Wall Street last night outside Cipriani's, where New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg was at a gala dinner (Photo: J.B. Nicholas/Splash News) Semper Fi: Marines Coming To Protect Protesters On Wall Street. The thousands of indefatigable Wall Street protestors, risking their eyes and recording equipment against Wall Street’s personal jack-booted thugs in the NYPD, recently garnered even more support– the US Marines.

Semper Fi: Marines Coming To Protect Protesters On Wall Street

That’s the type of support that may make an NYPD cop think twice before he decides to go all Tiananmen Square on a group of teenage girls, armed with chalk and cardboard signs (maybe it’s because they are spelled properly?). The Occupy Wall Street movement may have thought it broke new ground when the NYC Transit Union joined their movement, but that ground just tipped the Richter Scale with news that United States Army and Marine troops are reportedly on their way to various protest locations to support the movement and to protect the protesters.

Here’s the message Ward Reilly relayed from another Marine, on his facebook page: “I’m heading up there tonight in my dress blues. So far, 15 of my fellow marine buddies are meeting me there, also in Uniform. Kudos, Mr Reilly! Classic: Sex-Crazed. I love it when they talk dirty on c-span.

Classic: Sex-Crazed

Scanning the public service network Monday, one found mostly the usual highbrow fare. There was a segment on "Federal-Tribal Relations" and a "First Amendment Report Card. " At night, c-span scheduled something called "Government Leaders. " But this cagily titled segment was no Brookings forum. The sponsor: Larry Flynt. OK, I confess. Clocking Out: Eternal Recurrence of Budget Fights Edition. Main Street.

Clocking Out: Eternal Recurrence of Budget Fights Edition

Those Roman Colosseum–Worthy G.O.P.-Debate Audiences: Who Will They Boo or Cheer Next? At last night’s Republican-candidates debate, a question from a gay veteran of the Iraq war provoked boos.

Those Roman Colosseum–Worthy G.O.P.-Debate Audiences: Who Will They Boo or Cheer Next?

In earlier debates, references to Rick Perry’s having presided over a record-setting 254 executions drew cheers, as did the suggestion that if a hypothetical sick person lacked health insurance “society should just let him die.” (Exactly. "Hoods in the Hizzy" feat. Eric Bolling, FOX's Premier Race-Baiter. Hardknoxfirst: "RT @BlueTrooth: Maybe if # SNL Presents The 7th Or 8th GOP Debate With Host Fox’s ‘Shepard Smith’ Saturday Night Live is back, and they commemorated it by covering “the 7th or 8th” GOP debate.

SNL Presents The 7th Or 8th GOP Debate With Host Fox’s ‘Shepard Smith’

Bill Hader’s Shep Smith hosted this debate, which was between Mitt Romney, Rick Perry and “six other people who’ll never be president!” Constitutional Progressives. Presidential race loses fizz for Tea Party. By Patricia Zengerle and Eric Johnson WASHINGTON/CHICAGO Sun Oct 9, 2011 7:21am EDT WASHINGTON/CHICAGO (Reuters) - With their favored candidates for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination lagging or out of the race, many U.S. Tea Party activists are shifting focus to the struggle for control of the U.S. Senate. The fizz has gone out of the presidential contest for some supporters of the fiscally conservative movement now that former Alaska governor Sarah Palin is not running and Texas Governor Rick Perry and congresswoman Michele Bachmann are slipping in polls.

Republicans Cheering for Death Panels. Breitbart Fantasizes About Killing Liberals: ‘We outnumber them and we have the guns’ (Video) Tea Party darling Andrew Breitbart fantasized about killing Liberals — and especially union members — claiming that conservatives outnumber Liberals, and are the ones who have guns. The pseudo-journalist and media mogul also said he is the subject of death threats, and complained people on Twitter call him “gay.” Breitbart claimed he is favored by U.S. military officers, who, in a civil war, would come to his aid, and several times belittled political activist Janeane Garofalo. Breitbart said all this, and far more, at the Red Mass Group greater Boston Tea Party event in Lexington, Massachusetts on September 16.

What If the Tea Party Wins? SOURCE: AP/J. Scott Applewhite Education is on the Tea Party’s chopping block. Rep. Scott Garrett (R-NJ), pictured above, routinely grills education secretaries at congressional hearings, insisting that the Constitution does not authorize any federal involvement in education. By Ian Millhiser | September 16, 2011 Download this issue brief (pdf) CNN Tea Party Debate Live-Blog. By ThinkProgress on September 12, 2011 at 7:52 pm.

Police Brutality and Tea Party Hypocrisy in Phoenix, 4/15/2011. The dog-whistle dictionary - War Room. Republicans Bash No Child Left Behind, Then Bash Obama For Trying To Unravel It. By Marie Diamond on September 23, 2011 at 2:40 pm "Republicans Bash No Child Left Behind, Then Bash Obama For Trying To Unravel It" Last night’s Republican debate in Florida was filled with candidates’ tirades about the federal government’s role in education. No Child Left Behind, the sweeping and unpopular education law signed by President George W. Welcome to Tea Party rule in America where life is solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short. Another Republican debate last night – and this time the crowd stole the show. The Billionaires Bankrolling the Tea Party. Muddy Politics: Republicans aren’t reading their Bibles. It’s About The Audience, Stupid! #CNNTeaParty Debate. Tea Party: Don’t build public transit, because the terrorists might attack it.

Alan Grayson Blasts Tea Party Debate Audience's Reaction To Health Care Question: 'It's Sadism' Stephen Hill. Our degraded discourse: Fox News' Eric Bolling goes flat-out racist. Liberal Media Believes Palin/Tea Party Supporters Toothless Racists. Sarah Palin inspired her typical extraordinary level of excitement and attendance at our Tea Party Express V national bus tour rally in Manchester, NH. Arizona State Capitol Protests, 2011: Students fight back. Thomas Roberts: Republicans Want Time Machine To When Slavery Was Cool. Constitutional Conservatives vs. the Constitution. Never mind the candidates, can you believe what GOP debate audiences are telling us?

Tea Party Caught in Dirty Election Scam. Eugene Robinson: Where Are the Compassionate Conservatives? Apocalyptic GOP Is Dragging Us Into a Civil War. The 3 Biggest Lies Uttered In The CNN/Tea Party Express GOP Debate. A Cold Cup of Bitter Tea. What Happens If The Tea Party Wins? What You Missed While Not Watching Last Night’s Tea Party Debate. Fact checking the CNN and Tea Party Express debate in Tampa - The Fact Checker. Livewire.

David Shuster on anti-intellectualism in the GOP. Glory Days. The Most Powerful Response To The ‘Let Him Die’ Party.