The following is a rundown of the day’s news drawn from other media sources with topics curated just for Money and Markets readers: Obamacare, personal security and freedom of speech.
Michelle Obama: ‘Make It a Christmas Treat’ to Talk About Health Insurance
“This is the beauty of it. People have choices. They can go on to the website, they can talk to a navigator, they can learn for themselves what the law means and what it doesn’t mean.”
Obama Administration Knew of Healthcare.gov Security Risks Before Launch
“These documents show a disturbing lack of judgment by HHS officials, who decided to go forward with the launch of Healthcare.gov despite warnings of security vulnerabilities that placed sensitive information of website users at risk.”
White House Broadens Obamacare Exemptions
Millions of Americans who had their health plans canceled will be exempt from the Obamacare individual mandate, the administration said Thursday — a surprise move that comes just before Monday’s deadline to sign up for coverage starting Jan. 1.
Obamacare PR Campaign Earns a ‘Fail’
The Obama administration’s health-care enrollment PR campaign has been a total failure. Despite reportedly averaging 15,000 people a day signing up for the exchange last week, California is still well short of replacing the 1 million canceled individual policies.
Sebelius: No Tax Penalty for Those Who Had Individual Policies Canceled
People whose existing health-care insurance has been canceled because of the Affordable Care Act will not be hit with tax penalties for failing to line up new coverage as required under the law.
Politicians Respond to ‘Duck Dynasty’ Star’s Comments
“The reason that so many Americans love ‘Duck Dynasty’ is because it represents the America usually ignored or mocked by liberal elites: a family that loves and cares for each other, believes in God, and speaks openly about their faith.”
Paglia: Duck Dynasty Uproar ‘Utterly Fascist, Utterly Stalinist’
The suspension of Phil Robertson from A&E’s ‘Duck Dynasty’ is outrageous in a nation that values freedom, according to social critic and openly gay, dissident feminist Camille Paglia.
A&E Tried to Cut ‘Jesus’ from ‘Duck Dynasty’ Family Prayers
Robertson said that he had to wage “spiritual warfare” in order to get them to tape the family using Jesus’ name. Robertson also pointed out that the network had “inserted fake bleeps, like someone had used profanity, but no one had used profanity.”
A&E to Air ‘Duck Dynasty’ Marathon Despite Robertson Suspension
Despite A&E’s suspension of ‘Duck Dynasty’ star Phil Robertson over his comments regarding homosexuality, the channel will be airing a ‘Duck Dynasty’ marathon starring Papa Phil.
‘Boycott A&E’ Facebook Support Page for Phil Robertson Gets Over 1 Million ‘Likes’
The page states: “This page is to show support for the freedom of speech of Americans. Unless Phil is reinstated to the show, we refuse to watch the A&E Channel!”
FBI ‘Very Worried’ About ‘Cryptolocker Ransomware’ Scheme
It is being called the perfect crime and it has law enforcement around the globe baffled. Cryptolocker ransomware took over the department’s entire computer system and the police were forced to pay a $750 ransom to get back control.
Phony Copyright Claims Exploit Holes in U.S. Internet Law
Ecuador, having bargained away virtually all its oil production to China in return for low-interest loans to finance President Rafael Correa’s spendthrift populism, is in dire need of a new export. And the president seems to have found one: tyrannical censorship of his critics.
Government Using NSA to Change Amount in Bank Accounts, Warns Panel
A White House review panel report into the activities of the NSA suggested that the government was using the spy agency to launch cyber-attacks against financial institutions and change the amounts held in bank accounts.
Obama Commutes Sentences for Eight Crack Offenders
President Obama on Thursday commuted prison sentences for eight people convicted of crack cocaine offenses, including a cousin of Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick, one of the president’s staunchest supporters.
Four Young Students Arrested in Alleged ‘Knockout’ Attacks, Police Say
A 14-year-old girl and three other children, aged 10 and 11, were arrested in connection with three assaults that took place between October and November. The 14-year-old girl is being processed through the Family Court system.
The Money and Markets Team