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April 06, 2011

Bristol Palin’s Nonprofit Paid Her Seven Times What It Spent On Actual Teen Pregnancy Prevention

ThinkProgress -- Bristol Palin’s Nonprofit Paid Her Seven Times What It Spent On Actual Teen Pregnancy Prevention
In 2009, Sarah Palin’s daughter Bristol joined a teen pregnancy prevention nonprofit called the Candie’s Foundation. Today, the Associated Press reported that the Candie’s Foundation released its 2009 tax information, revealing that Bristol was paid a salary of $262,500. But a closer examination of the tax form by ThinkProgress shows that the group disbursed only $35,000 in grants to actual teen pregnancy health and counseling clinics: $25,000 to the Mt. Sinai Adolescent Health Center and $10,000 to the National Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy.

March 25, 2011

South Korea under fire for burying one million pigs alive

The pigs are at risk for hoof & mouth disease, but may be healthy. Many people are furious that the pigs weren't just vaccinated, or at the very least slaughtered in a humane way. South Korea: One Million Pigs Buried Alive In Foot And Mouth Outbreak, Mass Criticism | World News | Sky News
Since the first case of the disease was confirmed in November the country has embarked on a mass cull. Foot and mouth disease affects all cloven hoofed animals such as pigs, cattle and goats, and any country that has cases of it is unable to export the animals' meat. The South Korean government has so far refused to vaccinate pigs against the disease and is now slaughtering them in record numbers despite appeals to stop.

March 20, 2011

Mother sues preschool, claims it ruined her child's chance at the Ivy League

Mom Sues 4-Year-Old's Preschool | NBC New York
The irate mother of a 4-year-old child enrolled in an expensive private Manhattan preschool claims in a lawsuit against the institution that her kid spent too much time learning about "shapes and colors" with younger children and not enough time honing her testing skills to get into a top elementary school. Now, the 4-year-old's educational prospects of an Ivy League college career are ruined, alleges her mother Nicole Imprescia. And Imprescia wants the $19,000-a-year Manhattan school with which she says she entrusted her daughter's future to pay. Imprescia pulled her daughter Lucia out of the York Avenue Preschool just three weeks after she enrolled.

March 10, 2011

Pharma firm raises price on drug to prevent premature babies from $10 a dose to $1,500

Can Patients Get Around the Exorbitant New Cost of a Pregnancy Drug? – TIME Healthland
The cost of a drug used to prevent premature birth in high-risk mothers will rise from around $10 per dose to $1,500, now that the FDA has approved a branded version of the medication. The new medication is a form of progesterone, which has already been prescribed for decades and is currently made for this purpose by specialty drug stores known as compounding pharmacies. Now, KV Pharmaceutical Company, the maker of the new drug called Makena, has warned compounding pharmacies that they face FDA action if they continue to sell nonbranded versions of the drug, technically known as 17-hydroxyprogesterone caproate. KV's new price means the drug could cost mothers up to $30,000 per pregnancy — but some doctors and pharmacists say there may be ways to avoid the massive price increase. But first, why has a drug that has been used for decades suddenly become so expensive? Premature birth affects 1 in 8 pregnancies — some 543,000 annual births — resulting in intensive care and often lifelong disabilities in the child. It's responsible for $26 billion a year in medical expenses — a figure KV cites to justify the new price of Makena.

Wisconsin Republicans break rules, ram through bill stripping rights from workers

Wisconsin Conference Committee Passes New, Stripped-Down Anti-Union Bill | TPMDC
The special conference committee in Wisconsin -- convened in order to strip out the fiscal elements of Gov. Scott Walker's budget repair bill, in order to pass the anti-public employee union proposals and avoid the state SenateDemocratic boycott of the three-fifths budget quorum -- just met for roughly five minutes and passed the bill. Assembly Minority Leader Peter Barca (D) attempted to make a motion to delay the meeting or make amendments -- and was not recognized for a motion by the chair, state Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald. Barca argued, over Fitzgerald's attempts to say there would be no motions, that the conference committee violated the state's open meetings law, which requires at least 24 hours notice before a government meeting, unless there is good cause to act more quickly.
More commentary from Talking Points Memo:
It's not just the budget bill needs a quorum -- the big issue is that *any* bill with fiscal implications is supposed to have a quorum in the Wisconsin state Senate. So there are two choices here: 1. Collective bargaining has fiscal implications, and so the bill will be blocked in the courts and ruled unconstitutional. 2. Collective bargaining DOES NOT have direct fiscal implications, and Gov. Walker has been lying this entire time by making the case that it's fiscally necessary. So either the state R's just passed an illegal bill, or Walker has been lying this entire time and really is just interested in union-busting.