What We Read Today 26 July 2014

July 26th, 2014
in econ_news, syndication

Econintersect: Every day our editors collect the most interesting things they find from around the internet and present a summary "reading list" which will include very brief summaries of why each item has gotten our attention. Suggestions from readers for "reading list" items are gratefully reviewed, although sometimes space limits the number included.

Follow up:

  • Verizon to slow down speeds for some unlimited data subscribers (Marina Lopes, Thompson Reuters, MSN Money) Starting 01 October, Verizon will slow services for selected high volume users among their high speed wireless customers. The slowdown will occur when and where the network is experiencing high demand. The policy will impact customers who consume more than 4.7 gigabytes in a single billing period, who are on unlimited plans, who have fulfilled their minimum contract terms and are subscribing to service on a month-to-month basis. Other users might experience slower speeds when streaming high-definition video or during real-time online gaming as well.
A new study suggests that, in the search for extraterrestrial intelligence, CFCs should be considered evidence of highly civilized life forms, much in the way that scientists have suggested looking for infrared radiation in the past. And soon we'll have a means of sleuthing out possible exoplanetary pollutants: The researchers prove that the James Webb Space Telescope-the Hubble's grand successor, expected to launch in 2018-should be capable of detecting at least two kinds of CFCs, under certain conditions.
  • Why the Border Crisis Is a Myth (Veronica Escobar, The New York Times) A "boots on the ground" volunteer, who has lived for years in El Paso, says there is no emergency. Refugees are being handled smoothly by volunteer organizations just as immigrant waves always have been. Here is some of what she has to say:

To hear the national news media tell the story, you would think my city, El Paso, and others along the Texas-Mexico border were being overrun by children - tens of thousands of them, some with their mothers, arriving from Central America in recent months, exploiting an immigration loophole to avoid deportation and putting a fatal strain on border state resources.

There's no denying the impact of this latest immigration wave or the need for more resources. But there's no crisis. Local communities like mine have done an amazing job of assisting these migrants.

Rather, the myth of a "crisis" is being used by politicians to justify ever-tighter restrictions on immigration, play to anti-immigrant voters in the fall elections and ignore the reasons so many children are coming here in the first place.

In the last month, about 2,500 refugees have been brought to El Paso after crossing the border elsewhere. The community quickly came together to support the women and children and Annunciation House, the organization coordinating the effort.

Contrary to the heated pronouncements, this is nothing we haven't seen before. Groups of refugees arrive by plane and are processed byImmigration and Customs Enforcement. When they are released, Annunciation House takes them to a shelter where they get a shower, a place to sleep, meals and even health care - all provided by volunteers and private donations.

The families of the refugees also help, often paying for travel costs and taking them into their homes. The refugees then move on, to Florida, Georgia, New York or elsewhere.

While the numbers of refugees arriving in El Paso are a fraction of the number arriving in McAllen, in southern Texas, the chain of events is generally the same. Like El Paso, South Texas is not the permanent destination for these refugees. And the response from McAllen's citizens has been generous, too.


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