Daniel Wagner, Center for Public Integrity: With the ultimate captive markets, prison bankers and state jailers make money off high fees for financial services. ... JPay and other prison bankers collect tens of millions of dollars every year from inmates' families in fees for basic financial services. To make payments, some forego medical care, skip utility bills and limit contact with their imprisoned relatives, the Center for Public Integrity found in a six-month investigation. Inmates earn as little as 12 cents per hour in many places, wages that have not increased for decades. The prices they pay for goods to meet their basic needs continue to increase. By erecting a virtual tollbooth at the prison gate, JPay has become a critical financial conduit for an opaque constellation of vendors that profit from millions of poor families with incarcerated loved ones. read more
Sahil Kapur, Talking Points Memo: A federal judge in Oklahoma ruled Tuesday that Obamacare subsidies provided on the federal HealthCare.gov exchange are invalid, agreeing with a ruling by a three-judge panel on the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals against the subsidies.
"The court holds that the IRS Rule is arbitrary, capricious, an abuse of discretion or otherwise not in accordance with law ... in excess of statutory jurisdiction, authority, or limitations, or short of statutory right ... or otherwise is an invalid implementation of the ACA, and is hereby vacated," U.S. District Court Judge Ronald A. White wrote in his opinion. read more
Nature.com: Video gaming is a highly pervasive activity, providing a multitude of complex cognitive
and motor demands. Gaming can be seen as an intense training of several skills. Associated cerebral structural plasticity induced has not been investigated so far. Comparing a control with a video gaming
training group that was trained for 2 months for at least 30 min per day with a platformer game, we found significant gray matter (GM) increase in right hippocampal formation (HC), right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) and bilateral cerebellum in the training group. The HC increase correlated with changes from
egocentric to allocentric navigation strategy. GM increases in HC and DLPFC correlated with participants'
desire for video gaming, evidence suggesting a predictive role of desire in volume change. read more
A grand jury has decided Tony Stewart will not face charges for his role in the on-track death of sprint car driver Kevin Ward Jr. The decision was announced Wednesday, nearly seven weeks after Stewart's car struck and killed Ward at a dirt-track race on Aug. 9 in Canandaigua, New York. District Attorney Michael Tantillo also said Ward was under the influence of marijuana that night "enough to impair judgment." Stewart could have been charged with second-degree manslaughter or criminally negligent homicide.
24/7 Sports: New York Jets receiver David Nelson (Florida) had 3 catches for 15 yards in his team's game Monday night against the Chicago Bears. But trying to help his team win a football game is far from the most important thing Nelson has going on in his life.
Nelson traveled to Haiti in 2012 as a volunteer to help with the aftermath of the 2010 earthquake. He was so affected by what he saw that he and his brother started a foundation to help children orphaned by the earthquake.
Nelson and his brother later rescued nine kids who were living in squalor in Haiti. They are currently helping to raise the kids in a safe home in Haiti and plan on adopting them. read more