Noontime News is a snapshot of our RSS feeds from the noon (Eastern time) hour.

Motion To Stay Prop 8 Ruling Denied — But Judge Delays Lifting Stay

“A federal judge in California today denied a motion to stay his ruling on Proposition 8, saying he will lift the temporary stay Aug. 18 at 5 p.m. Pacific time.

Judge Vaughn Walker ruled last week that Prop 8, which defined marriage in California as heterosexual, is unconstitutional. He issued a temporary stay — meaning same-sex couples can’t get married yet — and today ruled that his stay will continue until next Wednesday.
“Proponents also point to harm resulting from ‘a cloud of uncertainty’ surrounding the validity of marriages performed after judgment is entered but before proponents’ appeal is resolved. Proponents have not, however, alleged that any of them seek to wed a same-sex spouse,” he wrote.”

Lungren Praises Ryan’s Budget Plan Privatizing Social Security As ‘The Best,’ But Hesitates To Endorse It

“Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), the ranking member of the Budget Committee and incoming chairman if Republicans capture the House in November, has a budget plan called “America’s Roadmap.” Right-wing pundits have applauded the plan, calling it “bold,” but reporters have noted that few Republicans have been willing to go on the record and actually cosponsor the legislation.

Yesterday at a town hall in Carmichael, California, a constituent got up and told Rep. Dan Lungren (R-CA) that she had visited the America’s Roadmap website after Lungren had told her at a previous town hall to visit it to see how Republicans would operate differently than the current Congress. She said she was unimpressed, and, as someone who “watches Fox News all day,” she wanted to see Tea Party principles of eliminating “almost everything” the federal government does. Lungren largely sidestepped her comment, and told the audience that he would promote national defense but cut spending for bicycle trails. “

Health insurers are lobbying to weaken regulations, despite record profits.

“With the economy in recession and a growing number of Americans going without health insurance coverage, the big health insurers are still posting impressive profits. Wellpoint, the nation’s largest insurer by membership, “reported a 4% increase in profit for the second quarter that helped generate earnings of $1.6 billion since the beginning of the year – a 26% increase over the same period in 2009,″ and Aetna said its “second-quarter profits rose 42 percent, with a net income of $491 million, compared with $346.6 million for the same quarter last year.” Earlier this week, Health Care for American Now! (HCAN) released a report which found that CEOs from the 10 largest for-profit health insurance companies “collected pay of $228.1 million, up from $85.5 million in 2008.” As a group, insurance CEOs saw a “167 percent raise,” while “Americans saw their averages wages increase by about 2 percent.” Insurers are spending less on health care and seeing higher profits”.

Texas Gov. Perry wants White to apologize for ‘master-servant’ remark

“Gov. Rick Perry demanded Thursday that Democratic challenger Bill White apologize for what he said were racially insensitive remarks, but White stood behind his comments and accused the Republican incumbent of playing racial politics. Perry continued a Republican assault on White for his statements to a group of African-American business leaders in Dallas that “We need a governor who’s a servant, as opposed to Rick Perry, who wants to be treated as master.””

The Lost Generation

“An International Labor Organization’s report released today shows that young workers are among the worst-hit by the global recession. All in all, there are 620 million people aged 15 to 24 who want to work. 81 million are unemployed, the highest level and the greatest number since the ILO started keeping track 20 years ago. Globally, the youth unemployment rate hit 13 percent in 2009, up from 12 percent in 2007. The organization expects the youth unemployment rate to continue rising until 2011.

In the report, the ILO warns of “significant consequences for young people as upcoming cohorts of new entrants join the ranks of the already unemployed” and of the “risk of a crisis legacy of a ‘lost generation’ comprised of young people who have dropped out of the labor market, having lost all hope of being able to work for a decent living.””

Interagency Task Force Releases Report on ‘Clean Coal’ Technology

“An interagency task force looking at long-term federal strategy for so-called “clean coal” technologies released its final report today. The verdict? There are no “insurmountable” barriers to commercial-scale deployment of the technology.

But there are a number of barriers to surmount. According to the report, uncertainty about climate change policy, high costs, regulatory uncertainty and potential concerns about liability are all major barriers.”

Flooding Raises Fears of Disease in Pakistan

“The United Nations warned of a possible second wave of deaths in flood-ravaged Pakistan while health workers struggled to forestall outbreaks of water-borne disease.”

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