ThinkProgress would like you to know that Ikea will be raising its average minimum wage to $10.76 an hour for its American employees. The company has said it will calculate base pay by considering the cost of living at each of its store locations. In other words, Ikea’s goal is to provide a living wage. ThinkProgress helpfully points out that other companies have also raised their minimum pay recently, and that “these companies usually cite the same reason: they expect it to help them attract and retain better employees, which will help their bottom lines.”
The Spectacle Blog
Besides the United States' loss to Germany in the World Cup, today was a good day for liberty. The Supreme Court ruled to restrict the power of government in three recent Supreme Court cases.
In the first case, Riley v. California, the petitioner Riley was charged in connection with a shooting after officers stopped him for a traffic violation and then seized and searched his cell phone. The Court ruled that “the police generally may not, without a warrant, search digital information on a cell phone seized from an individual who has been arrested.”
In a large-scale document dump, the IRS handed over thousands of emails from Lois Lerner, the key figure in the ongoing investigation of the IRS’s targeting of conservative Tea Party groups. The documents, obtained by multiple news organizations and the committees investigating the matter, appeared to show that Lerner intended to target Republican Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa, the ranking member of the Senate Judiciary Committee.
In a statement released by Republican Congressman David Camp, the chairman of the powerful Ways and Means Committee:
There is something going on that I may not have told you about.
It is really a matter of semantics, but it has turned out to be rather significant. You may have noticed the multiplicity of English translations for ISIS, the extremist Sunni group that has been terrorizing Syria and especially Iraq in recent weeks. The varied translations exist because the Arabic name—الدولة الاسلامية في العراق و الشام—contains a word, "the Sham," that only roughly translates into English. It refers to a geographic area that has not existed since the Ottoman era, but which includes all the land we now call Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, and Israel.
This helps to explain the worrying scope of ISIS's ambition. Evidence of this was reported by Reuters:
The al Qaeda-linked Abdullah Azzam Brigades had urged Lebanese Sunni Muslims to attack the Iranian-backed Shi'ite militant group Hezbollah a day before Wednesday's suicide bombing in central Beirut.
NASA is becoming just another tool in President Obama’s climate agenda.
This week marks the one-year anniversary of President Obama’s climate change speech in which he raged against greenhouse gas emissions. He proposed a series of executive actions on climate change and blamed Congress for failing to act on his fearmongering agenda. The executive actions sidestepped Congress by invoking the Clean Air Act, a broad-based law that gives the EPA the power to regulate carbon emissions on a commercial scale.
The budget for Obama’s seventy-five-point climate action plan includes $909 million to the State Department for clean energy and $1.8 billion to NASA for earth-oriented satellite and research efforts, among other expenditures involving twelve of the fifteen other departments and agencies.
Former Senate Majority Leader and White House Chief of Staff Howard Baker passed away today of complications from a stroke. He was 88.
Baker made history in 1966 when he became the first Republican elected to the Senate from Tennessee since Renconstruction. He would become a nationally known figure during the Watergate Hearings when he asked John Dean, "What did the President know and when did he know it?"
Interestingly, two years earlier, President Nixon had offered Baker a seat on the Supreme Court following the retirement of John Marshall Harlan II. However, Baker was not forthcoming with a reply and Nixon instead appointed William Rehnquist who would later become Chief Justice. Imagine how different late 20th Century American history might have been had Baker accepted Nixon's offer.
Baker was on Gerald Ford's shortlist to be his running mate in 1976, but Ford opted for Bob Dole. Instead, Baker became Senate Minority Leader following Jimmy Carter's election.
This is amazing.
This morning in the Wall Street Journal, former Bush aide Karl Rove writes a column that includes the following on the Mississippi Senate race:
Mississippi's Sen. Thad Cochran pulled off a difficult and surprising win Tuesday night, and he has the state's open primary law to thank for it. In the June 3 primary, Mr. Cochran trailed tea party favorite Chris McDaniel by 1,386 votes or 0.5% of the 313,443 votes cast. This week, he beat Mr. McDaniel, a state senator, by 6,373 votes or 1.6% of 374,893 votes.
Does the ruling make these appointments null and void? If so then surely all the decisions rendered by the NLRB from their appointment would be effectively null and void.
But somehow I don't think it's that simple. It never is.
I have a feeling that President Obama will invoke Andrew Jackson and say, "The Supreme Court has made their decision; now let them enforce it."
Yet if he does that then Obama could open the door to impeachment proceedings. However, I don't think that door would open until after the mid-term elections when both Houses of Congress will likely be in Republican hands.
As always we shall see.
Feature of the Day: Your taxes are going up. You just don’t know it yet.
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